Burley and Menston MP in plea for Convention withdrawal

Wharfedale Observer: MP Philip Davies MP Philip Davies

Life should mean life for the murderers of Lee Rigby and the only way to ensure they never walk free is by withdrawing from the European Convention of Human Rights, an MP has warned.

Burley and Menston MP Philip Davies said most “right-thinking” people would agree the two men who killed Fusilier Rigby in Woolwich, south-east London, in May should not be freed.

Speaking in Commons Justice Questions, Mr Davies, said: “Mr Justice Sweeney has already refused to give a whole-life tariff to a murderer due to the ruling from the European Court of Human Rights, and he has deferred the sentencing for the murderers of Drummer Lee Rigby, who most right- thinking people think should get a whole life tariff.

“When are we going to withdraw from the increasingly barmy European Convention on Human Rights so that we can ensure that a life sentence means life for the murderers of Lee Rigby?”

Last year a European court ruled whole life sentences breached the European Convention on Human Rights.

Justice Secretary Chris Grayling said no recent discussions had been held but that the government was arguing at the Court of Appeal that whole life tariffs are justified in the most heinous cases.

Mr Grayling blamed the Lib Dems in the coalition as the reason for not changing Britain’s relationship with the European Court of Human Rights, adding: “Wholesale change to our relationship with the European court of human rights, which I personally think is needed, is something that will have to wait until an election of a majority Conservative government.”

Last month David Cameron said the government was considering US-style 100-year prison sentences for murderers and serious offenders as an alternative to “whole life” sentences.

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