From 1 January 2007 until 31 May 2015 12 people have been murdered by offenders who had previously been convicted of murder and so were serving a life sentence at the time they committed the subsequent murder(s).
This figure relates to 11 separate offenders; one offender was responsible for two separate murders following his release from custody on life licence.
An offender serving a life sentence for murder will only be released into the community on life licence where the independent Parole Board assesses that it is no longer necessary for that offender to be detained in custody on the grounds of public protection. Any offender on a life licence is subject to strict controls and conditions and managed by the Police and Probation Services, working with other agencies, as necessary. An offender subject to a life licence may be recalled to custody if he breaches the conditions of the life licence in such a way that the protection of the public would be put at risk by allowing him to remain in the community.