Scotland releases 500 criminals back to the streets to relieve overcrowding in prisons

Thursday, June 27, 2024 - The Scottish government has released more than 500 inmates back to the streets to relieve overcrowding in prisons.

Jails across the UK are in crisis with governors in England and Wales warning they could run out of space within days.

On Wednesday, June 26, the SNP government in Edinburgh allowed more than 500 Scottish inmates, serving short-term sentences, out early in a bid to tackle the issue.

Prisoners inside for under four years who have 180 days or less left to serve are being released in waves over the coming weeks across all Scottish prisons.

Sex offenders and domestic abusers are among those exempt, with governors handed a veto.

The charity Victim Support Scotland told Sky News the system will lead to reoffending.

Kate Wallace, its chief executive, said: "The last time this happened, over 40% had re-offended within six months. That created more victims, and we are fully expecting that to be the case again.

“Victims are concerned about the risks to their own personal safety, and we are aware already of some prisoners who have been in contact with victims saying that they are going to be released, and it being used as a coercive control tool.”

The Scottish Prison Service insists safety is a priority.

A spokesman said: "Governors have vetoed anyone they found posed an immediate risk to individuals or groups, with the help of intelligence from police and social work."

The Prison Governors' Association (PGA) claims police will be unable to detain people because there's not enough room behind bars.

Post a Comment