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October 18th 2020

Civil Liberties

Prisoner Steven Gallant granted Royal pardon to apply for early release after ‘exceptionally brave actions’ tackling London Bridge terrorist 

Dr Neil Hudgell

Dr Neil Hudgell

Executive Chairman

Prisoner Steven Gallant granted Royal pardon to apply for early release after ‘exceptionally brave actions’ tackling London Bridge terrorist 

Prisoner Steven Gallant – one of those who confronted and stopped the London Bridge terrorist when on day release last year – has been granted a Royal pardon which enables him to apply for release from prison early.

Prisoner Steven Gallant – one of those who confronted and stopped the London Bridge terrorist when on day release last year – has been granted a Royal pardon which enables him to apply for release from prison early.

Mr Gallant was out on licence attending a prisoner rehabilitation event when terrorist Usman Khan stabbed Cambridge University graduates Jack Merritt, 25, and Saskia Jones, 23, to death on November 29, 2019.

It was his first day release on licence since starting a life sentence in 2005, having being convicted along with another man of murdering Hull firefighter Barrie Jackson.

Mr Gallant, 42, tackled the terrorist with a chair and narwhal tusk before helping wrestle him to the ground.  His actions assisted armed police in stopping Khan, with officers shooting him dead outside Fishmongers’ Hall before he was able to threaten the lives of others in the capital.

As reported across the national media today, the Royal pardon, which will see him able to apply for parole early, follows representations being made to the prison and probation service on his behalf by solicitor Neil Hudgell and supported by others including Karl Turner MP, leading to the Royal Prerogative of Mercy being approved by the Queen on the advice of the Government.

A Ministry of Justice Official said Mr Gallant had been granted the pardon ‘in recognition of his exceptionally brave actions’.

Brave actions raised in Parliament and praised by Prime Minister

Hull East MP Karl Turner raised Mr Gallant’s actions in Parliament the day after he helped stop the London Bridge attacker, leading to Prime Minister Boris Johnson saying he was ‘lost in admiration’ for his bravery, and that he hoped ‘his gallantry will in due course be recognised in the proper way.’

Solicitor Neil Hudgell, who is representing Mr Gallant, wrote to the prison and probation service earlier this year asking for them to exercise a discretion under which the tariff date to apply for release could be advanced.

That request was subsequently endorsed by the prison governor, and has led to the Royal Prerogative being granted so that consideration for parole will now be heard next June rather than April 2022, when his minimum tariff was due to expire.

Mr Hudgell says his client is determined to be a ‘positive example’ to others in how he has turned his life around since being jailed.

“This is extremely good news for Steve, as he continues to plan for his release” said Mr Hudgell.

“Steve is very happy with what is a highly symbolic outcome and feels a debt of gratitude to all those who helped him to achieve a Royal Prerogative of Mercy. He is passionate about using his knowledge and experiences to help others steer away from crime”

In national media reports today, the son of Barrie Jackson, Jack, told the Sunday Mirror: “In my mind Gallant has nearly done his time and if someone has undergone rehabilitation and change, which it seems he has, then it’s fair enough.”

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