You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Decision on Scott Watson's parole delayed

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 6/12/2016
Scott Watson © TVNZ Scott Watson

Convicted Marlborough Sounds double murderer Scott Watson is set to learn before Christmas if he will be paroled.

The 45-year-old is serving a life sentence for the 1998 murders of Olivia Hope,17, and 21-year-old Ben Smart and was jailed for a minimum term of 17 years.

Their bodies have never been found and Watson has protested his innocence.

He appeared in front of the Parole Board on Tuesday but its decision has been reserved.

It is expected to be released before Christmas.

A spokesman for the board said Watson and the families of his victims will be told first before the decision is made public.

Watson was seen by the board for the first time last year but was denied an early release, with it saying it didn't consider issues of guilt.

The board said he was an undue risk to the community, citing a psychologist's report and lack of treatment while in prison. He was quick to violence while he had support from family and friends but it wasn't clear if he would use it.

Ben Smart and Olivia Hope disappeared in the Marlborough Sounds on New Year's Day in 1998. © NZ Police Ben Smart and Olivia Hope disappeared in the Marlborough Sounds on New Year's Day in 1998.
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon