Killer Glyn Razzell loses latest bid for freedom thanks to new ‘Helen’s law’

KILLER Glyn Razzell has lost his bid for freedom after his application for parole was refused. 

The 61-year-old was jailed for life in 2003 for murdering his wife Linda a year earlier. Her remains have never been found.

Razzell, who lived in Highworth, was ordered to serve a minimum term of 16 years, which kept him behind bars until 2019, when he was then able to apply for parole. 

After Covid delayed proceedings, his Parole Board heading was finally able to go ahead but it was determined that he would not be released.

A spokesperson for the Parole Board told the Adver: “We can confirm that a panel of the Parole Board refused the release of Glyn Razzell following an oral hearing. 

“Parole Board decisions are solely focused on what risk a prisoner could represent to the public if released and whether that risk is manageable in the community.   

“A panel will carefully examine a huge range of evidence, including details of the original crime, and any evidence of behaviour change, as well as explore the harm done and impact the crime has had on the victims.   

“Members read and digest hundreds of pages of evidence and reports in the lead up to an oral hearing.   

“Evidence from witnesses including probation officers, psychiatrists and psychologists, officials supervising the offender in prison as well as victim personal statements are then given at the hearing.   

“The prisoner and witnesses are then questioned at length during the hearing which often lasts a full day or more. Parole reviews are undertaken thoroughly and with extreme care. Protecting the public is our number one priority.”

The Adver understands that this Parole Board hearing is one of the first to also take The Prisoners (Disclosure of Information About Victims) Act 2020 – known as Helen’s law – into consideration. 

Helen’s Law came into affect in January and is designed to make it harder for killers to get parole if they refuse to reveal where they hid their victim’s body.

A summary of the decision making process confirms that Helen’s Law played a significant part in the panel denying Razzell’s parole. 

“The panel had a statutory duty to consider the nondisclosure of information concerning the whereabouts of the victim’s remains.

“It concluded that Mr Razzell’s stance held implications for how open he might be with supervising staff.

“Continued withholding of such important information suggested a need to retain a perception of himself and maintain self-preservation through keeping control of the narrative.

“This and a marked lack of empathy for those involved in the case were seen to bear on the panel’s risk assessment.”

It also added that the panel had taken into account statements from victims on the long-term consequences of him refusing to tell anyone where Linda might be. 

It said: “The panel had the benefit of victim personal statements which conveyed clearly the impact of Mr Razzell’s crime and the long-term consequences of his offending and non-disclosure.

“Their contents were considered very carefully by the panel members.”

The Parole Board confirmed that Razzell could apply for parole again in the future.

“Under current legislation he will be eligible for a further review in due course. The date of the next review will be set by the Ministry of Justice.”

Mum-of-four Linda was last seen parking her car in Old Walcot on the morning of March 19, 2002, having dropped off her children at school in Highworth and her then boyfriend at work.

A search of Razzell’s borrowed car showed a significant quantity of blood in the boot, which matched his estranged wife’s.

Over an 18-month investigation, detectives spoke to 2,600 people, followed up more than 2,200 lines of enquiry and took 1,540 statements.

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