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Child killer 'long way from parole'

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 29/06/2016
Peter Joseph Holdem was sentenced to life imprisonment for abducting and murdering six-year-old Louise Damodran. The pic is for representational purposes only. © Getty Images Peter Joseph Holdem was sentenced to life imprisonment for abducting and murdering six-year-old Louise Damodran. The pic is for representational purposes only.

Nearly three decades after he was given a life sentence for killing a six-year-old girl, Peter Joseph Holdem is still a "long way" from being a candidate for release, the parole board says.

Holdem, in his late 50s, was sentenced to life imprisonment after abducting and murdering six-year-old Louise Damodran in October 1986, not long after being released from jail for attempting to rape a 10-year-old girl.

Although he became eligible for parole in 1996, the parole board this week released a decision not only denying him release, but saying it would consider postponing his next eligibility hearing for five years when he next appears in December.

The board said Holdem had a "lifelong personality disorder with low intelligence".

"Mr Holdem probably has had more treatment for his sexual offending than almost any other offender of this type, with little apparent gain," a psychologist's report to the board said.

The board said while his lawyers had pushed for temporary releases and reintegration, those options were "by a wide measure, premature and, unrealistic".

"He is a long way from being a realistic candidate for parole as [he] is an undue risk," it said.

The board said it would see him again in December.

"The only issue before the board then will be whether or not Mr Holdem should be subject for a further postponement order, given that the legislation now provides for an extended maximum period of five years."

Holdem's list of offending includes 66 convictions including 12 sex crimes, three of assaulting children, three of escaping, one of perjury and numerous dishonesty crimes.

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