Prisons & Probation – Latest News:

  • Wed, 01 Dec 2021 14:20:16 +0000: Remand inmates face second Christmas in English custody – legal charity - Prisons and probation | The Guardian

    Fair Trials says number of remand prisoners detained longer than custody limit is rising

    Some defendants will be facing “a second Christmas behind bars without the opportunity to prove their innocence”, a legal charity has warned, as the number of remand prisoners in England and Wales detained longer than the legal custody limit continues to rise.

    Figures obtained by legal charity Fair Trials show that, as of 30 June, 3,949 people had been held in prison awaiting trial or sentencing for more than the six month pre-trial custody time limit, a 10% rise in six months, prompting calls for urgent action to address the problem.

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  • Wed, 01 Dec 2021 10:41:47 +0000: Essex mega-prisons pose threat to rare wildlife, warn environmentalists - Prisons and probation | The Guardian

    Government accused of reneging on environmental pledges with plan to build on old airfield near Braintree

    Campaigners have criticised plans to develop two mega-prisons on the site of a rare bird and amphibian habitat in England.

    The government has been accused of reneging on commitments in the Environment Act to stop the decline of wildlife by proposing the development on the old Wethersfield airfield, which has become an important space for nature near Braintree, Essex.

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  • Tue, 30 Nov 2021 11:16:40 +0000: Up to one in 11 staff in some jails investigated for misconduct - Prisons and probation | The Guardian

    Exclusive: Analysis of MoJ figures for England and Wales reveals disproportionate level of misconduct inquiries in some jails

    Up to one in 11 staff in some prisons across England and Wales have faced at least one misconduct investigation for allegations including sexual harassment and assault, Guardian analysis of Ministry of Justice data shows.

    The data, obtained via freedom of information laws, has revealed that for the year 2019-20, one in 11, or 9%, of staff at the Mount, a category C men’s prison in Hertfordshire, faced at least one misconduct investigation, the highest proportion of all prisons across England and Wales.

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  • Mon, 29 Nov 2021 19:50:25 +0000: Whistleblower tells inquiry of ‘shocking’ abuse at immigration detention centre - Prisons and probation | The Guardian

    Former officer who filmed undercover footage at Brook House, says managers were complicit

    A shocking culture of abuse by staff towards detainees at Brook House immigration detention centre was described by a whistleblower giving evidence to a public inquiry into widespread mistreatmeant of detainees at the G4S-run site.

    The former Brook House officer Callum Tulley described repeatedly witnessing abusive behaviour by officers towards detainees, and told the inquiry that he was so disturbed by it that he had felt compelled to contact the BBC and begin undercover filming at the centre.

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  • Sun, 28 Nov 2021 16:50:49 +0000: Sentences must be decided by the judges | Letter - Prisons and probation | The Guardian

    With regard to ‘Harper’s law’, Malcolm Fowler is against hobbling the court’s discretion by striving to ram square pegs into round holes

    Zoe Williams is right about “Harper’s law” (PC Andrew Harper’s killing was appalling, but changing the law won’t protect key workers, 25 November). Like many former practitioners, I am for placing our trust in the experience and informed discretion of our judges to fashion the appropriate sentence, given all the circumstances of individual cases.

    It follows that I am against hobbling the court’s discretion by striving to ram square pegs into round holes – this is what happens when we pretend to identify categories of offending, where on a wiser appraisal there are always differences to be found. Indeed, once such a category of “public servant” were to be established, where would it end?

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