Dominic Raab will introduce new laws to prevent serial killer Levi Bellfield from using legal aid to get married
Attorney General Dominic Raab vowed today to introduce new laws “quickly” to prevent jailed serial killer Levi Bellfield from using legal aid to get married behind bars.
The 54-year-old brute, who is known to have murdered at least three people including 13-year-old Milly Dowler, has become engaged to a regular visitor at HMP Frankfield, Durham, where he is serving a lifetime fee. .
News of his marriage proposal to the blonde woman, who is in her 40s, sparked outrage when they went public last year. The government has already promised action, and Bellfield boasts that his fight against them “is costing me shit.”
Deputy Prime Minister Raab – who is preparing to will unveil its new Victims Bill in the coming weeks, which would ban people serving life sentences from hooking up behind bars, branded Bellfield’s offer to use taxpayer money is “wrong.”
He told LBC’s Nick Ferrari at breakfast: ‘Let me be very clear with you, Nick: I don’t think it’s appropriate and I’m going to change the law.
Serial killer Levi Bellfield (pictured) is currently serving two lifetime charges for murdering at least three people. He now he wants to use legal aid to get married.
Collision Course: Justice Secretary Dominic Raab says he will introduce new laws to prevent the jailed serial killer from using taxpayer money to fund his fight to marry his lover behind bars.
“But I also think there is a question about the risk of someone marrying such a heinous criminal as in this case, Levi Bellfield.
‘What we’re doing protectively to make sure vulnerable people aren’t subjected to that element of risk. So on both factors, I’m committed to doing what we can to prevent that from happening.
Pressed on how quickly the change could be introduced, Mr Raab insisted: “I plan to act quickly.”
Bellfield, who is serving two life sentences for the murder of Milli, 13, Marsha McDonnell, 19, and Amelie Delagrange, 22, has demanded that prison bosses grant his request to marry.
A letter sent on her behalf by the Carringtons law firm claims that the delay in approving her marriage application is “illegal” and is a violation of the 1983 Marriage Act and the European Convention on Human Rights. Sun reports.
A source told the newspaper: ‘Bellfield laughs that he’s getting all this help for free. It is alarming that, as things stand, his lawyers have the law on his side.
“The prison has kicked this into the tall grass because they don’t want it to happen, but legally they’ll probably have to allow it.”
A spokesman for the Prison Service told the outlet: “The application is being considered.”
Some 60 inmates, many of them serving long prison terms, requested marriage last year.
Speaking today, Mr Raab said he wants to ban all prisoners serving life warrants from marrying under his Victims Bill.
“Passing a law is never about an individual case, but I don’t think it’s appropriate and so within the realm of existing powers that I have, but also within the legislative agenda which I’ll say more about shortly, I think That’s wrong”. ‘ she added.
The deputy prime minister’s plans to ban the practice have been put on hold amid fears of potential legal challenges, but Rishi Sunak’s government is confident it will fight any legal battle, with the backing of the Attorney General.
Levi Bellfield’s fiancée (pictured), a woman in her 40s, is one of the jailed serial killer’s regular visitors.
Bellfield is currently behind bars at HMP Frankfield (pictured) and is unlikely to ever be released
Bellfield is known to have killed three people, including 13-year-old Milly Dowler (pictured)
He also killed 19-year-old Marsha McDonnell (left) and 22-year-old Amelie Delagrange (right).
In a leaked letter to a cabinet colleague, Mr Raab said: “I believe there is a very real risk that marriage in such cases will undermine public and victim confidence in the Criminal Justice System.
Even where there is no risk of direct physical harm, there is a significant risk of coercive or controlling behavior.
“I have seen how marriage-seeking Bellfield has caused anguish and trauma to his victims.”
A government source said allowing heinous criminals to marry would add to the anguish of the victims’ surviving relatives.
Downing Street has since confirmed plans to pass legislation that would ban people with life sentences from marrying.
A spokesman for the Prime Minister said: “The Ministry of Justice is committed to presenting you with legislation to prevent prisoners serving life warrants from marrying in prison and we will set out the details in due course.”
“We believe it is profoundly inappropriate and the attorney general has stated his intent to prevent it from happening.”
Asked why it was ‘inappropriate’, the spokesman said: ‘We don’t think it’s right for prisoners serving life sentences to get married in jail.’
Bellfield is said to have been contacted by his now fiancée by Peter Sutcliffe (pictured), after seeing a photo of her in the Yorkshire Ripper’s cell.
Conservative MP Brendan Clarke-Smith has also lent his support, saying vulnerable members of the public could be “groomed” for marriage by manipulative thieves.
Labour’s shadow Justice Secretary Steve Reed has criticized the Conservatives for failing to enact a bill sooner, insisting that Labor has led calls for a victims’ bill for eight years.
His new fiancée previously told the Mirror: ‘He’s not a monster. He does have a bad past, but 17 years in prison changes a person.
He has changed, he has regrets, and there are always reasons why a person goes wrong in life.
‘There is always a much bigger picture. She is 53 years old, she is still young and she has to live knowing that she will only grow old and die in that horrendous place”.
Bellfield met his fiancée through Peter Sutcliffe, who was a friend of the woman’s before he died in 2020.
Bellfield and Sutcliffe were in the same wing at HMP Frankland. Bellfield asked to be put in contact with her after seeing the photo of her in Sutcliffe’s cell, The Sun reported.
They spoke on the phone, before she began visiting Bellfield at the Durham County jail.
“What people don’t realize is that the woman was friends with Sutcliffe for years before he died, although there was no romance between them,” a source told the Sun.
They said that Bellfield sought Sutcliffe’s consent to write to him about a year before he died.
His fiancée has now said that she is “not ashamed” of their relationship and believes that Bellfield has “changed” and is “not a monster”.
She described herself to the Mirror as “extremely non-judgmental”, adding that she and her fiancé have had “hugs and kisses” in Durham County jail.