James Bulger’s killer has reportedly been refused parole – and will have to wait another two years before applying.
Jon Venables and Robert Thompson served eight years after the horrifying murder in 1993.
The duo – aged 10 at the time of the murder – were freed on licence with lifelong anonymity, but Venables is now in jail for possessing child abuse images.
James’ dad Ralph Bulger told the Daily Mirror: “This is the first time ever that the right decision has been made regarding my son’s killers.
"I am so relieved because I was convinced he was getting out – just as he has done before.”
Previously, James' dad had expressed his fears over the release of Venables.
He believes his son's killer will get plastic surgery and strike again if he's freed from prison.
Both killers served eight years in secure juvenile detention before they were released on licence with lifelong anonymity.
In 2017, Venables was sent back to prison for having child abuse images on his laptop, after already going to jail in 2010, and being released in 2013.
The images included category A photos, the most serious type, and he also admitted having a “paedophile manual”.
Sentencing him to 40 months’ jail in 2018, Mr Justice Edis said: “The children depicted were often very young and vulnerable, there is discernible pain and distress suffered.”
Venables would normally be allowed out after 20 months, but he cannot be freed until the Parole Board recommends it as he has a life licence, meaning he is on parole until he dies.
Mr Bulger said: “He may not stay in jail for ever, but just knowing he is behind bars means children are safe from him for at least another two years.
“I have always said that Venables is a dangerous predatory paedophile and should never be freed from prison, but no one has listened until now.
“They let him out twice before and he has always re-offended.
"Now the parole officers have seen the light and agreed that he is not safe to be released.
"I can’t express how much of a relief that is – I’ve spent the last few months dreading the phone call to say he was back on the streets.
"It will never be safe to free him and I hope that they enforce his life licence and keep him locked away for ever now.”