Great Train robber Ronnie Biggs is likely to be freed by Valentine's Day next year, said a family spokeswoman.
Judy Totton told the BBC News website: "We understand that this is what the government has indicated. We are very very hopeful."
The Ministry of Justice said it did not comment on individual cases.
Biggs was jailed for 30 years for his part in the 1963 robbery but escaped and went on the run. He returned in 2001 to serve the rest of his sentence.
Biggs, 79, has been in poor health after suffering a series of strokes and heart attacks.
His son Michael has long campaigned for his father to be released on compassionate grounds.
Ms Totton said: "It was such a long sentence in comparison to the sentences meted out nowadays."
The Guardian reported that plans were under way to find a private nursing home for Biggs in north London, to be near
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