Search icon


29th Dec 2022

Child murderer Jon Venables could be freed from prison within matter of weeks

Charlie Herbert

Venables is one of the youngest convicted murderers in British history

James Bulger’s murderer, Jon Venables, could walk free from prison within a matter of weeks as he seeks a parole hearing to secure his release.

Venables, now 40, and Robert Thompson were both just 10-years-old when they kidnapped, tortured and killed two-year-old James Bulger in 1993, leaving his body by a railway line in Liverpool.

Venables and Thompson were both found guilty of the toddler’s murder, making them the youngest convicted murderers in British history.

The pair have been living under new identities following the 2001 parole decision to release them on lifelong licences.

A court order was also made in the same year giving them both lifetime anonymity, preventing any information being released that might reveal their new names.

Venables was imprisoned again in 2010, after breaching the terms of his licence. After being released in 2013, he received another prison sentence in 2017 for possession of child pornography.

In February 2018 he was jailed for 40 months, after pleading guilty to having more than 1,000 indecent images of children.

Venables is now set to have another parole hearing, as it is more than two years since his last bid for release in September 2020.

The Sun reports that he has a “strong chance” of release.

But Bulger’s father, Ralph, is calling on Home Secretary Dominic Raab to use his powers to block the killer’s release, saying it would be the “ultimate betrayal” if Venables was allowed to “walk around as a free man.”

He told the Sun: “If Venables is walking around as a free man as we mark 30 years of losing our beautiful boy, it would be the ultimate betrayal.

“Mr Raab has pledged to crack down on the most dangerous criminals in this country.

“Venables should be top of that list and never see daylight again.”

Bulger has said he wants to attend any parole hearing Venables faces, adding that one could be held in “early 2023.”

He said Venables was a risk to society and a remains a danger to children.

He added: “I’m bracing for the worst news because I’ve no trust left in the warped system of this country. But Dominic Raab can change that.”

Bulger lost a case in 2019 to have Jon Venables’ identity made public.

Related links: