Nearly 100 terrorists could soon be freed from UK jails next year

Nearly 100 terrorists could soon be freed from UK jails.

The Parole Board is considering the release of 92 terror convicts who will have served two-thirds of their prison sentences.

Among the cases under review are Nazam Hussain, who plotted attacks alongside London Bridge terrorist Usman Khan.

He could have his freedom bid considered as early as February, along with pipe bomber Jack Coulson.

Rangzieb Ahmed, who headed up a three-man al-Qaida cell, is expected to be dealt with in March.

In the same month a ruling will be made on Jawad Akbar, one of five terrorists who plotted to bomb the Bluewater shopping centre in Kent and the Ministry of Sound nightclub in London in 2004.

Also on the list is Islamic extremist Abdalraouf Abdallah, who was visited in jail by Manchester Arena bomber Salman Abedi.

A Parole Board spokesman said: "Any terrorist convicted offender rel-eased into the community will be subject to some of the strictest licence conditions available."

Since the introduction of the Terrorist Offenders (Restriction of Early Release) Act 2020, 117 cases have been referred to the Parole Board.

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So far 11 have been freed and 14 refused release.

Terror cases often take longer to consider due to their "complexity and go through painstaking and thorough processes" to make sure all necessary evidence is available to panels for hearings, the Parole Board said.

Intelligence from security services forms a key part "of many terrorist parole reviews and panels tasked with making the decisions – made up of former and serving judges, chief constables, prison governors, prosecutors, psychologists and psychiatrists – require top-level security clearance" so they can her sensitive evidence.

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Terror cases are a "tiny" proportion of the Board's caseload – equating to less than 100 of the roughly 16,000 dealt with each year.

But because of the "critical public protection nature" of the cases the Board is increasing the number of specialists who can handle them and hopes to have around 70 panel members by early next year.

A Parole Board spokesman said: "Public protection is always our top priority."

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