The Colin Pitchfork saga exposes the problem with the Parole Board

Colin Pitchfork, 61, was jailed for life for raping and murdering 15-year-olds Lynda Mann and Dawn Ashworth in Leicestershire in the 1980s. Now the Parole Board has said Pitchfork should be released. The backlash from politicians has been swift. Local MP Alberto Costa said he was ‘appalled’ by the decision. ‘It would be immoral, wrong and frankly dangerous to release this disgraceful murderer of two children,’ he added. Justice Secretary Robert Buckland, who is said to be exploring the use of the ‘reconsideration mechanism’ to reverse the decision, appears to agree with his Tory colleague. But the reality is that Buckland – and Costa – have little power to stop