Sex offenders will not be among those considered for early release, the government has confirmed, as it released more details about a scheme aimed at cutting the prison population in the event of a virus outbreak.
The only inmates eligible for the scheme will be those who are not convicted of violent or sexual offences,and have less than seven months left to serve in jail.
The assurances came after some islanders raised concerns about the Release on Temporary Licence (ROTL) scheme announced by Home Affairs Minister Constable Len Norman during yesterday's States Assembly meeting.
Anyone released will be subject to a range of strict licence conditions and must comply with supervision requirements, including frequent checks by the Honorary Police, Probation and Prison Service.
Pictured: Those who are released will be subject to close monitoring.
They will also have to undergo alcohol and drug tests.
“As a Government we are committed to ensuring that justice is served to those who break the law," the Home Affairs Minister said.
"However, this is an unprecedented situation and introducing this temporary scheme will enable the prison population to be managed to reduce any increased pressure of the health service if Covid-19 becomes prevalent in the prison."
Nick Cameron, Governor and Head of the Prison Service, added that HM La Moye had taken "proactive steps" to protect staff and prisoners from covid-19.
Pictured: The Home Affairs Minister, Constable Len Norman.
"These measures include ceasing all visits to the prison, changing the prison regime, holding court hearings via video link, isolating prisoners or staff who might be vulnerable because of their age or have underlying health conditions. We currently do not have any cases at the prison," he explained.
“We will only enact the ROTL measures should we have to, and we expect only to release up to a maximum of 10 prisoners. The ROTL scheme only considers low-risk offenders near the end of their sentence. No prisoner with C19 symptoms, or positive for C19 would be released. Any prisoner on licence has strict conditions and will be supervised, and any breaches can result in a recall to prison. Finally, prisoners may be returned to prison, to complete their sentence in custody, once the risks of COVID-19 have passed.”
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