Bulger petition to be debated

15 March 2018, 15:28 | Updated: 15 March 2018, 15:31

venables

James's mother Denise Fergus welcomed the decision to debate the petition, which calls for a public inquiry into his case to be held, after the Government had initially said an inquiry was not necessary.

More than 211,000 people have signed the petition, which also calls for questions to be asked about murderer Jon Venables' time in the prison system, and why experts believed he had been rehabilitated.

He and Robert Thompson were both 10 when they kidnapped, tortured and murdered two-year-old James in Liverpool 25 years ago.

Last month, Venables - who lives under a new identity - was convicted of possessing indecent images of children for a second time and jailed for three years and four months.

Mrs Fergus said: "I am so happy that something positive is happening finally, on the eve of what would have been my James's 28th birthday tomorrow.

"The Petition Committee have finally listened to the overwhelming support from the public."

She added: "I cannot thank all who have supported me through what has been a very frustrating and emotional fight and hope that now I will finally get justice for James."

In its initial response to the petition, the Government said: "The offender was convicted of further offences as a direct result of robust and effective monitoring.

"Therefore the Government considers that a public inquiry into this tragic case is not necessary."

But a statement released by the Petitions Committee on Thursday said there would be a debate on the petition.

It said: "We don't know yet when the debate will happen, because there's an active legal case that's relevant to the petition.

"Parliament avoids talking about cases that are active in the UK courts because that could interfere with the legal process."