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Barrister: Whole-life terms are like death sentence

"Whole-life" sentences contradict the UK's abolition of capital punishment, a criminal barrister has claimed.

It comes as senior judges consider a series of appeals on whether convicted murderers should be locked up for their entire lives.

Last year, the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg ruled that prisoners serving so-called "whole life" tariffs in England and Wales must have their minimum terms reviewed during their sentence.

Barrister Felicity Gerry told BBC Radio 5 live's Morning Reports: "Once you decide you don't have the death penalty, a whole-life order... is just the same really: you're sentencing somebody effectively to die in prison."

  • 24 Jan 2014
  • From the section UK
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