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Prisoner Escapes

Volume 506: debated on Wednesday 24 February 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many abscondees from each prison were foreign nationals in each year since 1997. (317636)

Figures on the number of foreign national prisoners who have absconded from each prison since 1997 are not available centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost by accessing the individual record of each absconder.

A prisoner absconds if he or she absents themselves from prison without overcoming a physical security barrier such as that provided by fences, locks, bolts and bars, a secure vehicle or handcuffs. The rate of abscond from open prisons continues to fall and absconds are now at their lowest level since centralised reporting of this type of incident began in 1995.

Foreign nationals, including those subject to enforcement proceedings under the Immigration Act, must be risk assessed for open conditions in the same way as all other prisoners but with the additional requirement that the UK Border Agency is asked to contribute any information which might indicate an increased risk of abscond.