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Offenders: Cost of Punishment

Volume 475: debated on Tuesday 29 April 2008

10. To ask the Secretary of State for Justice if he will give consideration to charging offenders for the cost of their punishment. (202053)

The 1952 Prison Act requires all expenses incurred in the maintenance of prisons and prisoners to be met from public funds.

The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 enables the confiscation of criminally acquired assets. Courts frequently impose compensation orders against defendants under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

In this way prisoners who have funds can be made to contribute directly towards the costs of the criminal justice process, including those costs incurred in their imprisonment.

We are currently looking at how the work and behaviour of prisoners can be better linked to the regime they are under in prison through a prisoner compact. I will be publishing proposals on this shortly.