Prisoners will not jump jab queue as ‘Levi Bellfield offered vaccine’

Milly Dowler case
Milly Dowler case

The Ministry of Justice has said prisoners will not get preferential treatment for a coronavirus jab amid reports serial killer Levi Bellfield has been invited for a vaccine.

More than 6.3 million vaccines have been given in the UK so far, with 5.9 million of these first doses, with those aged over 70, health and social care workers and clinically extremely vulnerable people highest in the priority list.

The Sun reported Bellfield, serving two whole life orders for the murders of Marsha McDonnell, Amelie Delagrange and Milly Dowler, has been told he and other inmates at Frankland Prison, County Durham, could be vaccinated in the coming weeks.

Priority for the vaccines has been determined by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, with everyone over 70 and clinically extremely vulnerable people all planned to get a first dose by February 15.

Milly Dowler was abducted and killed by Bellfield
Milly Dowler was abducted and killed by Bellfield

The Ministry of Justice tweeted: "The NHS is legally required to vaccinate prisoners in eligible cohorts, such as those over 80, in line with guidance. Prisoners will not receive the vaccine ahead of their cohort.

"To suggest prisoners are being treated any differently to the general public is completely untrue."

Bellfield, 52, was given a whole life term for murdering Ms McDonnell, 19, in 2003, and murdering Ms Delagrange, 22, and attempting to murder Kate Sheedy, 18, in 2004.

He was already serving this sentence when he went on trial accused of killing Milly, who was snatched from the street while on her way from school to her home in Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, in March 2002.

Bellfield was found guilty of abducting and killing the 13-year-old following a trial at the Old Bailey in 2011.