Under the Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims Act 2004, Northamptonshire Probation Trust has a legal duty to contact victims of sexual or violent offences if you have received a prison sentence of 12 months or more. Northamptonshire Probation Trust has a dedicated team of staff who deal with victims of these crimes.
Victims have the right to:
- be given general information about the prison sentence process
- be told about the key stages in your sentence, such as, when decisions might be made about your temporary or permanent release from prison, or your movement to open prison conditions
- express their views on the conditions under which you will be released but not about if you should be released.
- be told only about the details of those conditions on your licence that are about them
- be told of the month of your release and the area to which you will be released. The victim is not entitled to be told of the actual date of release or your release address
- be told if you are recalled to custody
- opt in or out of this process at any time
During your sentence and licence period you will be expected to work on how your offending may have affected your victim/s. You will need to talk to your Offender Manager about your release plans and how the victim’s views and any additional licence conditions may affect your release plan. As a serving prisoner you have a right to see information, which is taken into account when decisions are being made about your conditions of release. This can include information from, or about victims. However, the Probation Service can make an application to the Prison Governor to withhold information from you under certain circumstances. One example for instance would be, if it was felt that sharing information with you would increase the risk of harm to others. You may wish to talk to your Offender Manager and/or solicitor if this should happened.
During your licence period you must comply with all conditions on your licence, including any conditions relating to contact with the victim. You risk being recalled to prison if you fail to comply. If you are unsure about what the restrictions mean, talk to your Offender Manager who will explain it to you.