Disgraced former Christian Heritage Party leader Graham Capill has been released on parole, having served three years short of his nine-year conviction for multiple child sex offences.
Former police prosecutor Capill, 52, was jailed in July 2005 for offences against children aged five to 11.
His offending against three young girls began in 1990 - the year after he became leader of the Christian Heritage Party.
Capill had been set for release in June 2014 but has been eligible for parole since June 2008, when he had completed two-thirds of his sentence.
The Parole Board last month granted Capill parole, after having previously turned down parole five times.
The board noted he had successfully completed the Kia Marama child sex offending programme in last November, while a psychological report in May said Capill was of low to medium risk of reoffending.
The board concluded it was unlikely Capill would reoffend.
"The psychologist noted that Mr Capill had made progress in intellectually understanding his offending and the salient skills for managing his risk for reoffending," it said.
"Significantly, given his progress in treatment, coupled with adherence to his parole conditions, the psychologist assessed this as being sufficient to manage his low/medium recidivism rate risk upon release."