Ronnie Biggs is serving a 30-year prison sentence
No-one has officially requested that the Ministry of Justice release 79-year-old train robber Ronnie Biggs from jail, a campaigner has revealed.
Mark Leech, Prisons Handbook editor, said Justice Secretary Jack Straw told him this when they met on Tuesday.
He said Mr Straw had told him: "The problem with Mr Biggs is no-one has formally asked me for his release."
Mr Leech said: "I was shocked as I had assumed requests had been made and rejected but that's not the case."
Mr Leech said his impressions on the release campaign came from what Biggs' lawyers and family had been reported in the press as saying.
A Ministry of Justice spokeswoman said: "We do not comment on individuals."
Nursing home plan
Biggs, from Lambeth, south London, was a member of the 15-strong gang which attacked the Glasgow to London mail train at Ledburn in Buckinghamshire on 8 August 1963, in what became known as the Great Train Robbery.
They made off with £2.6m - a record haul at the time - but were captured shortly afterwards.
Biggs was jailed for 30 years but escaped after 15 months from Wandsworth Prison, south London, in a furniture van.
He was on the run for more than 30 years, living in Spain, Australia and Brazil, before returning to the UK voluntarily in 2001.
Earlier this week he was returned to Norwich Prison from hospital, where he was being treated for a bout of pneumonia.
His son Michael Biggs said he wanted to move his father to a nursing home because he was so ill he would need special care that he could not give.