Mother calls for immediate release of son jailed under abolished IPP scheme

  • Luke Ings' family have been speaking to ITV News Meridian's Mel Bloor

The mother of a man from Bracknell, jailed almost 20 years ago, is pleading for his release from prison.

Luke Ings is what is known as an IPP prisoner - imprisoned for public protection - and is serving an indeterminate sentence.

He was ordered to serve a minimum of 18 months for robbery when he was 17-years-old.

Now aged 35, his family and local MP say he has more than served his time and needs more support for his autism.

Luke with his younger brother MItchell and sister Millie Credit: Sam Ings

Luke's mother, Sam Ings, told ITV News Meridian: "I'm not a parent who'll say my little boy didn't do wrong. He did do wrong. He's been punished for it.

"18 months, yes, not 18 years. No child deserves to go in at 17 and come out at 37. It's not fair.

"It's not just unfair on him but it's unfair on all of them. There was a sentence put on them that should never have been put on them.

"It took all their liberties, all their lives away from them."

  • Sam Ings, Luke's mother

IPP sentences were abolished more than a decade ago but hundreds of prisoners remain subject to them.

Those serving an IPP can only be released once they are no longer deemed a risk to the public.

Several incidents have occurred during Luke's imprisonment which have prevented his release.

But his family say this is because of his autism and claim he is not receiving the support he needs in jail.

James Sunderland MP has called for a review into the case of constituent Luke Ings Credit:

Having visited Luke in prison, Bracknell MP James Sunderland made a plea in Parliament last May to release him.

He told ITV News Meridian: "This is an important issue. I think it would sit uncomfortably with anybody knowing that we have these people in prison.

"I think in many ways once they've served their term, we've got to work really hard to release them back into the community and give them a chance.

"I think Luke deserves that chance but of course those risks must be managed at the same time and I'm sure there's a way of doing it."

A Ministry of Justice spokesperson said: “We have already reduced the number of IPP prisoners by three-quarters, having abolished the sentence in 2012, and we will continue to help those still in custody to progress towards release. But public protection must be our priority. Decisions on the release of prisoners serving IPP sentences are made by the independent Parole Board.”

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