Charles Bronson loses bid to be freed from jail

Charles Bronson - Lindsey Parnaby/Shutterstock
Charles Bronson - Lindsey Parnaby/Shutterstock

Notorious prisoner Charles Bronson has lost a parole board bid to be freed from jail.

Bronson was first jailed in 1974 for armed robbery but has spent most of the past 48 years behind bars after a string of violent offences committed while in custody.

Bronson, who changed his surname to Salvador in 2014, took part in one of the country’s first public parole hearings earlier this month.

In a document detailing the decision published on Thursday, the Parole Board said: “After considering the circumstances of his offending, the progress that Salvador has made while in custody and the evidence presented at the hearings, the panel was not satisfied that Salvador was suitable for release.

“Nor did the panel recommend to the Secretary of State that he should be transferred to an open prison.”

Bronson was handed a discretionary life sentence with a minimum term of four years in 2000 for taking a prison teacher at HMP Hull hostage for 44 hours. Since then, the Parole Board has repeatedly refused to direct his release.

Bronson told judges he loved a 'rumble'

Three parole judges considered his case during a hearing at HMP Woodhill in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, while proceedings were live streamed from the Royal Courts of Justice in central London.

Bronson told parole judges he loved a “rumble” and enjoyed mass brawls in prison, but insisted he is now a reformed prisoner, has found solace in art and is a man of “peace”.

He likened his experience in front of the Parole Board to being on BBC programme The Apprentice.

A psychologist told the panel Bronson has post-traumatic stress disorder after facing some “brutal and unacceptable” treatment behind bars. He has been held in solitary confinement for much of his time in jail.

During the hearing he was described as holding “anti-authoritarian views” and being “suspicious” of the motives of others, as well as having a “romanticised” view of violent incidents in the past.

None of the prison and probation officials who gave evidence at the parole hearing said he was ready to be released.

Bronson is the second inmate in UK legal history to have his case heard in public after rules were changed last year in a bid to remove the secrecy around the process.