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Killer Kathy Yeo never had access to violent offenders program in prison but is eligible for parole

Kathy Yeo is in prison for murdering her boyfriend Christopher Dorrian.

A WOMAN who decapitated her former lover could soon be released to work in the community despite never being required to complete a violent offenders program while in custody.

Convicted murderer Kathy Yeo is being assessed by Corrective Services for day and work release, a move formally opposed by a victim’s advocate on the grounds that she has never had access to the Violent Offenders Therapeutic Program, which is only available to male prisoners.

Christopher Dorrian was killed by his girlfriend Kathy Yeo, who is up for parole.

It comes less than a year before Yeo is eligible for parole, despite never having revealed where she disposed of the rest of victim Christopher Dorrian’s body.

The case has highlighted the lack of rehabilitation programs for female prisoners in NSW as sources also reveal there is no program aimed at reforming dozens of female sex offenders in custody.

Sources say there are about 20 female offenders in custody who would qualify for a violent offenders program, while at least 30 are considered sex offenders.

Victim’s advocate Howard Brown, who made a submission to Corrective Services on behalf of Dorrian’s family opposing the downgrading of her security classification, said it was “appalling” women were not forced to complete the same programs available to men.

“The bottom line is that the purpose of sentencing is twofold: One is to punish, but the other is to rehabilitate,” Mr Brown said.

“Why would you not treat people who require rehabilitation with programs that do have some probative value and it is even more appalling when you think the only reason it’s not used is purely gender-based.”

Kathy Yeo has never taken part in a violent offender’s program in jail but is being assessed for day release.

Source:News Corp Australia

It comes after families of murder victims, including Mr Dorrian’s son James, called for the government to change legislation forcing convicted killers to reveal the location of their victim’s remains, or serve the entire term of their jail sentence without early release.

Mr Dorrian’s head washed up in a sports bag in Sydney’s Cooks River in 1997 with three bullets inside his skull, two weeks after he had disappeared. Yeo, who was Dorrian’s former lover, was convicted of shooting Dorrian before cutting off his head and was sentenced to 24 years in prison.

Mr Brown said Yeo was an example of an “extremely violent” female offender who needed rehabilitation in jail, despite her clean record while in custody.

“Her offending behaviour only relates to her interaction with men, whereas most of her interactions during her custodial period have been with women so of course she’s going to appear normal,” he said.

A Corrective Services NSW spokeswoman said the department provided “different” treatment to female offenders.

“Evidence shows female inmates often have underlying trauma and therefore require a different treatment approach than male offenders,” the spokeswoman said.