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Woman who defrauded seniors will soon be eligible for parole

A woman who defrauded seniors at Fraserview Intermediate Care Lodge on Williams Road, remains in prison but her successful challenge of the Abolition of Early Parole Act means she's one step closer to freedom.

Judith Lynn Slobbe was one of three applicants who sought to challenge the retrospective application of the act in B.C. Supreme Court.

When she began to serve her sentence of seven years and seven months in prison in 2010, the Corrections and Conditional Release Act would have made her eligible for release to a halfway house on accelerated day parole after serving just one-sixth of her sentence.

But in a ruling released Wednesday, the B.C. Supreme Court found that the transitional provision of the new legislation that sought to abolish that early parole, does not impact those people who were already serving their sentence when the act came into effect.

Slobbe was sentenced in 2010, and would have been eligible for day parole on July 27, 2011, the court ruling states. But after the new law come into force, the parole board informed Slobbe that it wouldn't review her case for accelerated day and full parole.

Slobbe became eligible to apply for day parole on April 30 of this year, and will be eligible to apply for full parole on Oct. 31, 2012.

But she remains in custody at the Fraser Valley Institution in Abbotsford, and did not apply for day parole earlier this year.

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Heather J. Holmes ruled that the transitional provision of the new act "violates...the charter and is not valid to the extent that it makes the AEPA apply retrospectively to offenders sentenced before March 28, 2011, when the AEPA came into force."

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