Prisoner in jail for 11 years for 10 month sentence

James Ward was originally convicted of actual bodily harm on his father in 2006 In jail, he set fire to his bed and was given an IPP sentence, which has no expiry IPPs were introduced to safeguard the public from criminals with low sentences The Parole Board has finally decided to free Ward after judging him as low risk

By Alexander Robertson For Mailonline

Published: 09:11 BST, 14 September 2017 | Updated: 09:11 BST, 14 September 2017

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A mentally-ill prisoner who has been locked up for 11 years despite originally being sentenced to just 10 months is to be released.

James Ward has been kept behind bars due to years of misdemeanours, including setting fire to his cell bed and repeatedly self-harming.

The 32-year-old was sentenced under Imprisonment for Public Protection (IPP), which allows HM Prison Service to keep him locked up indefinitely.

But the Parole Board has finally decided to free Ward, with work under way to secure him a place at a hostel.

James Ward (pictured) has been locked up for 11 years despite originally being sentenced to just 10 months in prison

James Ward (pictured) has been locked up for 11 years despite originally being sentenced to just 10 months in prison

His sister April told the BBC that she was unsure if her brother was even aware that he was set to be freed.

She added: 'He's got no hope. He will be very surprised of the release today because it's taken over 10 years for this result to happen.

'We are over the moon, my dad can't stop grinning. My dad hasn't grinned for years. I can't stop crying or smiling.

'James is not a risk to the public, he's only ever been a risk to himself, and with the right support we can get him there.'

IPPs were introduced in 2005 but scrapped seven years later by then justice secretary Ken Clarke who has described them as a 'stain' on the prison system

IPPs were introduced in 2005 but scrapped seven years later by then justice secretary Ken Clarke who has described them as a 'stain' on the prison system

Ward, from Nottinghamshire, was originally convicted of actual bodily harm on his father in 2006, with a judge sentencing to 10 months behind bars.

However shortly afterwards, Ward set fire to the mattress inside his cell, forcing another judge to apply a IPP sentence, which has no expiry date.

The sentence was designed to safeguard the

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