THE man dubbed the Big Nose Bandit could be free within weeks after the Serious Offenders Review Council recommended Kevin Gallagher’s release to parole after 15 years behind bars.
Gallagher, 59, has served more than 15 years for armed robberies and has been eligible for parole for more than a year.
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He could be released at the end of next month when the NSW Parole Board meets again to determine his application for release.
The Serious Offenders Review Council has recommended that Gallagher be subjected to electronic monitoring and intense supervision upon his release.
He was jailed for a maximum of 18 years and six months in 1999 for two armed robberies and a charge of conspiracy to rob.
He previously served a long sentence for murdering an inmate in Parramatta jail in the 1980s.
Gallagher always denied committing the murder.
A Corrective Services spokesman said that if Gallagher was granted parole he would have to: undergo psychological counselling if directed by his parole officer, comply with all directions given by the officer, not contact his co-offender and not possess or use firearms.
Gallagher was the leader of a group known as the Big Nose Gang that was believed to have carried out a string of armed robberies at Newcastle banks and building societies in the mid to late 1990s.
The gang earned the name when a member of the group’s nose could be seen on security camera footage when their scarf came loose during a robbery.
Gallagher was initially sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of the inmate, but his sentence was redetermined and he was released on parole in 1993.