/ at the risk of going all "daily mail"
why is this guy possibly allowed out in 8 years?
Hang on, the judge said 'he may never be released', so what you are saying is extremely unlikely.
Saunders, of Merstham in Redhill, Surrey, was told he would have to serve a minimum of eight years in prison for the rape of the eight-year-old.
Read again? Though else where it makes it clear that it may be much longer
Isn't the minimum sentence a requirement to ensure consistency in courts?
It's equivalent to a "normal" sentence of 16 years. As it was a guilty plea he will have received a discount of between 1/5 to 1/3 - so probably equivalent to a sentence of 20 to 24 years.
He has to serve 8 but then he has to convince a parole board that he no longer poses a risk. If he fails to convince them - he stays in for the rest of the year till his next chance.
A normal sentence would mean he walks out after serving half.
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