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Prison release for ex-royal aide

Published 21/05/2015

Jane Andrews, a former dresser to the Duchess of York, was given a life sentence
Jane Andrews, a former dresser to the Duchess of York, was given a life sentence

A former royal aide jailed for stabbing her boyfriend to death when he refused to marry her is to be released from prison.

Jane Andrews, a former dresser to the Duchess of York, was given a life sentence after being convicted of murdering wealthy businessman Tom Cressman in 2001.

A spokesman for the Parole Board said: "We can confirm that a three-member panel of the Parole Board has directed the release of Jane Andrews.

"The decision to release is a matter for the Board, which is independent. Arrangements and the date of the release are a matter for the Ministry of Justice. We are unable to comment further on the details of this case."

Andrews was ordered to serve a minimum of 12 years after a jury at the Old Bailey accepted the prosecution case that she killed Mr Cressman, 39, at the home they shared in Fulham, London.

They rejected her claims that she was acting in self-defence when she struck him on the head with his cricket bat and then stabbed him in the chest with a kitchen knife.

A Ministry of Justice spokesman said: " The release of life-sentence prisoners is directed by the independent Parole Board once they are satisfied they can be safely managed in the community.

"Once released, they are subject to strict licence conditions. These can include exclusion zones and non-contact orders. If they fail to comply with their licence, they can be immediately returned to prison."

A decision on when Andrews will be released will be taken by the Ministry of Justice.

In 2009, Andrews triggered a search after she walked out of East Sutton Park open prison near Maidstone, Kent.

She was returned to custody more than two days later after being found at a Premier Inn hotel a few miles away.

Andrews was charged with an offence of escaping lawful custody but the Crown Prosecution Service later said it had decided not to take the matter further.

Andrews, who was born in Grimsby, worked as a dresser for the Duchess of York for nine years until 1997.

Mr Cressman's brother, Rick Cressman, questioned how the Parole Board had come to the conclusion that it was safe to release Andrews.

The 64-year-old told the Birmingham Mail: "I really hope that they don't live to regret the decision and that nobody else suffers like Tommy did and like we continue to.

"I think she remains a seriously dangerous individual and shouldn't be freed."

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