Charles Bronson may have butchered his chances at parole, Ministry of Justice sources have suggested, after a Channel 4 documentary revealed his supposed son tutoring him to “show remorse” in a video call. His appearance in the documentary could also lead to Britain’s most notorious prisoner having his privileges revoked.
Bronson was sentenced to an indefinite life term in 2000 for taking a prison art teacher hostage and is notorious for being an overtly violent prisoner. His latest parole hearing will take place next month.
However a Channel 4 documentary, named Charles Bronson: Fit to be Free?, features conversations conducted over Zoom between the 70-year-old inmate and George Bamby-Salvador, a paparazzi photographer who claims to be Bronson’s son.
According to prison rules, inmates’ calls cannot be broadcast on television without written permission from the Governor – which Channel 4 did not obtain.
Ministry of Justice sources told the Telegraph that Bronson would likely have privileges removed as a punishment.
During the conversation, Bamby-Salvador can be heard explaining to the criminal that he must show some remorse for having taken the teacher hostage, in order to have a better chance at being granted parole at his upcoming hearing.
Bronson, 70, says of his crime: “Looking back on it now, I probably over-reacted.”
But Bamby tells him he needs to appear more contrite, saying: “When you’re talking about Phil Danielson, I want you to say to me, ‘Do you know what, I think about that every day. I ruined that guy’s life’.”
Bronson responds: “Well, what I would go as far as to say is, I do feel sorry for him.”
His alleged son pushes him, saying: “Remorseful. That’s the word that they want,” but Bronson is not interested, replying: “You can’t live life regretting your life.”
In a further effort to garner support, Bronson says: “I’m focused, I’m settled, I can actually smell and taste freedom like I’ve never, ever done in my life.
“I’m now anti-crime, anti-violent. What the f**k am I still in prison for?”
Phil Danielson, the teacher whom he took hostage at spearpoint for two days at HMP Hull in 1999, suggested in the documentary that “maybe justice has been done” and Bronson should be allowed his freedom if he shows remorse.
However, he adds: “It needs to be documented remorse and not just clever talk to get himself in the papers.”
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The teacher said of the incident, which was captured on CCTV: “I was terrified out of my mind. I thought, ‘I’m going to die now. What’s he going to do, how’s he going to do it?’ The damage that was caused by him has moulded my whole life. It will be with me for the rest of my days.”
Since 1974, Bronson has amassed 17 convictions of a string of violent offences and has taken 11 hostages over his criminal career.
The parole board confirmed that Charles Bronson’s hearing is set for March 6 and March 8, and said that reviews are undertaken thoroughly and with extreme care.
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