Lee Rigby was killed on the streets of Woolwich on 22  May (MoD)
Lee Rigby's killers have had their sentences delayed pending the judges' decision

Judges have announced that whole life sentences are legal in a landmark appeal.

A panel of five judges, led by Lord Chief Justice Lord Thomas, decided "life-means-life" at the court of appeal in London.

The decision came after notorious murderers Jeremy Bamber, Douglas Vinter and Peter Moore successfully argued at the European court of human rights last year that life sentences were in breach of human rights.

The Strasbourg court said criminals handed a life sentence should have their terms reviewed after 25 years.

The government has said that whole-life tariffs are justified "in the most heinous cases"

A number of high-profile cases had been delayed pending the judges' decision including that of Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale, the convicted killers of Lee Rigby.

David Cameron entered the debate on life tariffs last month when he said life should mean life; Conservatives have considered motioning steps to impose US-style 100-year sentences.