Dartford MP Gareth Johnson welcomes commitment to keep serious offenders in jail for longer

Dartford MP Gareth Johnson took part in a debate in the House of Commons that centred around making serious offenders spend far more of their sentence behind bars.

The draft Release of Prisoners (Alteration of Relevant Proportion of Sentence) Order 2019 debate was held in the House of Commons on Tuesday.

This legislation is to ensure the most serious violent and sexual offenders will spend at least two-thirds of their sentence in prison rather than half their sentence, which is currently the case.

During the debate, Mr Johnson raised with the Justice Minister his support for the proposal but also asked for more to be done on this issue. He said: “I welcome today’s announcement because it injects an element of honesty into our sentencing system, and reduces confusion and frustration among victims. Will he be absolutely categoric that this is part of a process and not an event in itself—that is, will we see further occasions where such measures will be rolled out so that there can be more justice for the victims of crime?”

Following the debate, Mr Johnson added: “This legislation implements the manifesto commitment we had at the recent General Election and ensures the most serious offenders spend more of their sentence behind bars. We have an ongoing commitment to the victims of crime and we therefore need to see more occasions where the sentence given by a Court more accurately reflects the time actually served. It’s simply wrong for rapists and robbers to be let out just halfway through their sentences.”