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Prison And Court Escort Services

Volume 405: debated on Friday 16 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) how much was spent on prison and court escort services in each of the last five years; [112138](2) how many prisoners escaped

(a) at court and (b) while in transit between court and prison in each of the last five years; [112141]

(3) how many operational staff were employed by each of the private contractors responsible for prison and court escort services in each of the last five years; [112139]

(4) what penalties have been imposed on the companies responsible for prisoner escorts in each of the last five years; and what the reason was for the penalty in each case; [112142]

(5) what percentage of prisoners appearing at court arrived on time in the last year for which figures are available. [112140]

The table shows the number of escapes from escort contractors while the prisoner was either in court or in transit:

From courtNot available1Not available1453827
In transitNot available1Not available11124

1 Although the total number of escapes for 1988–89 and 1999–2000 is available, specific information on whether the escape took place while the prisoner was in court or while in transit was not available until 2000–02.

Expressed as a percentage of the national average of prisoners handled during 2002–02, 76.39 per cent, of prisoners were delivered contractually on time to courts and 86.61 per cent, were delivered to courts before the court start times.

The table gives the level of payments made to contractors for the provision of the prisoner escort contracts service for the five years from 1998–99:


Amount paid (£)


The table shows the total amount of financial remedies applied to the escort contractors since 1999:


Number of remedies applied

Total value (£)

Group 4 Court Services160,000
Premier Prison Services136,000
Securicor Custodial Services2500,000
Reliance Custodial Services225,000

The table shows the average number of operational staff (excluding senior managers) employed on courts escorts services duties over each of the last five years by each of the escort contractors.

Group 4 (4)


Premier (2)


Securicor (1)


Reliance (1)



1 shows the number of contracts held by each company