Charles Bronson given phone ban after sending Sky News audio message from jail

·3-min read

Prisoner Charles Bronson claims he has been given a 28-day phone ban by jail officials after he sent Sky News an audio message about his bid for parole.

Britain's most notorious inmate prompted an internal investigation when he said in a recorded voice note from jail last week: "I bet you can't believe I'm still in, can you? It's an absolute liberty.

"I'm 70 years old now. I've never murdered anyone, I've never raped anyone. What am I in jail for? People don't believe it. They think I'm a serial killer."

Soon after we published his message, Bronson said he was told he had breached prison rules and would not be allowed to use a telephone for four weeks.

But sources deny he has been banned, insisting he is still being allowed to make calls, though now they are being monitored by staff, a restriction that will be reviewed in a month.

It is understood that in his voice message to Sky News, Bronson breached prison rules by not first asking the governor for permission which is granted in only exceptional circumstances.

Bronson told a friend this week: "That little chat cost me a 28-day phone ban, I can't phone no one now. As soon as I say anything they ban me from using a phone.

"They don't like it up 'em, but it's only the truth."

Bronson is awaiting a new parole hearing - it is likely to be the first to be held publicly, because his lawyers won a recent High Court ruling which established a prisoner's right to a public hearing.

He said: "Every time I get near my jam roll (parole) silly things start happening, like they want me to kick off. These last two months I've been locked up 23 hours every day, this weather an' all.

"It's like living in an oven. I don't have time to shower, I can't do things. I just get me one hour in the yard."

Bronson, who now calls himself Charles Salvador after his artist hero Salvador Dali, was jailed for seven years for armed robbery in 1974 and, but for two brief periods of freedom, has been kept in jail for nearly 50 years after a series of assaults on staff, kidnaps and roof-top protests.

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He was given life for the kidnap and terrorising of a prison art teacher in 1999, but has long since passed the three-year minimum sentence imposed.

He has been turned down for parole repeatedly because he was deemed a threat to the public.

He said: "They keep drumming it into the public that I'm a danger, but who am I a danger to? I've never been a danger to the public.

"I've been fighting them (the authorities) all my life, fighting for human rights, prisoners' rights, but it's cost me nearly 50 years of my life in boxes and cages.

"They cut you off from society, from your family, from your friends. I want to go home, I'm an artist born again and I despise violence.

"I've been a model prisoner for 10 years but they still won't let me out."

Last week, Bronson's solicitor Dean Kingham wrote to Justice Secretary Dominic Raab, urging him to grant Bronson a pardon on the grounds of his "exceptional progress" in stopping all violent episodes for the past five years or more.

The lawyer is expected to apply for a public parole hearing when the new ruling on such applications comes into force on Thursday.

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