THE Parole Board will review its decision to release the killer of Helen McCourt.

The announcement comes after Justice Secretary Robert Buckland today called for the parole board to reconsider its ruling to free Ian Simms who murdered 22-year-old Helen in 1988.

Despite being found guilty through overwhelming DNA evidence, the former landlord of the George and Dragon pub has never revealed where Helen's remains are.

This led to her heartbroken mum Marie McCourt, from Billinge, starting a campaign to change the law four years ago.

Marie has spent four years fighting for a law change calling for killers who do not reveal the whereabouts of their victims' bodies to not be eligible for parole.

In May it was announced that the law had Government support and in October it was mentioned in the Queen’s Speech.

But the latest Parole Board hearing came before the law could go through the process of being entered into the statute books.

Marie has had less than 21 days to put forward evidence to help Justice Secretary Robert Buckland ask for a reconsideration of the parole board ruling.

Today, it has been announced he has done just that.

A Parole Board spokesperson said: "An application under the reconsideration mechanism has been received from the Secretary of State for the case of Ian Simms and will be considered by the Parole Board as soon as possible."

A reconsideration request can be made if someone has reasons to show the decision is either: procedurally unfair - meaning that the correct process was not followed in the review of the offender for parole - for example, important evidence was not shared or irrational - meaning the decision makes no sense based on the evidence of risk that was considered and that no other rational panel could come to the same conclusion.

An application must be received within three weeks (21 calendar days, excluding Bank Holidays) of the decision being issued.

It has been 19 days since the ruling on November 21.  Speaking to the Star, Helen's mum Marie, said: "In the 31 years since Helen was killed, I only wanted one thing from that man, just to know where her body is.

“I have asked and asked and he has denied. So to be told now that him denying me this gives him the appearance of being remorseful is a disgrace.

“Since I heard the news of his release on the 21st I have been desperately gathering everything I have to prove that this man should not be set free.

“They gave me 21 days to do this, 21 days to get enough information together to keep my daughter’s killer behind bars.

“I feel let down. I was assured over and over again that he would not be released if he did not say where she was.

“And to read that the basis for their decision is down to the fact he’s convinced himself he didn’t do it is just ludicrous.”