Parole Board Decisions Should Reign Supreme

14 Mar, 2013

Parole Board decisions should reign supreme, Public Safety Minister Vic Toews said following revelations that a second-degree murderer was granted an escorted absence from prison by a warden despite a negative Parole Board decision.

“Individuals deemed ineligible for parole should not be given conditional release that is tantamount to parole through the back door,” he said in an email statement. “I’ve asked (Correctional Service of Canada) commissioner Don Head for options to ensure that decisions of the Parole Board of Canada are given full effect, both in letter and in spirit.”

He also commended backbencher Conservative Corneliu Chisu for taking on the issue in the form of a private member’s bill aimed at closing the loophole that’s allowed wardens to make such decisions in matters involving inmates serving life sentences without considering previous decisions of the Parole Board.

Chisu’s private member’s bill seeks to amend the Corrections and Conditional Release Act to harmonize decisions made by the Parole Board in cases of first– or second-degree murder.

It raises questions about whether the government will take over the bill, which has yet to be introduced or simply lend its support to the legislation which would hasten the passage.

Source: The Montreal Gazette

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