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House of Commons Hansard
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29 March 2010
Volume 508
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To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many prisoners at HM Prison Ford (a) escaped, (b) absconded and (c) failed to return in each month since 1 January 2007; what category of offences had been committed by each of those prisoners; what the term of custodial sentence was of each; on what date each (i) left and (ii) was returned to prison; and what sanction was imposed on each. [324591]

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The tables show the numbers of prisoners, by month and by index offence, who have absconded from, or failed to return to Ford prison between 1 January 2007 and 31 December 2009. No prisoner has been classified as escaping from Ford over this time period.

Prisoners who escape or fail to return from temporary release are usually re-captured quickly and returned to a closed prison. Currently 96 per cent. of all prisoners who abscond are returned to custody. Both types of unlawful absence from the prison are criminal offences and prisons, police and the Crown Prosecution Service work together to pursue such crimes through the courts where this is appropriate. Alternatively, the prisoner may be dealt with by way of internal adjudication and may receive additional days in prison as a result of this. Details of the sanctions imposed are not held centrally and could only be obtained by identifying and contacting each closed prison where a former prisoner from Ford had been returned; this would incur disproportionate cost.

While details of the terms of custodial sentence are held centrally this could only be provided by accessing each record manually which would incur disproportionate cost.

Absconds and temporary release failures have been very successfully reduced year on year. Last year, to 31 March 2009, was the lowest level of absconds since central records began. The current year, to 31 March 2010, is forecast to produce an even lower level of absconding, both nationally across England and Wales, and at Ford.

The following table shows the number of absconds from HMP Ford over the last 12 years. With one month remaining in the year, the position at Ford reflects the national picture and shows that this year is set to be the lowest level of absconds at the prison on record.

Number of absconds HMP Ford

1997-98

50

1998-99

38

1999-2000

68

2000-01

57

2001-02

57

2002-03

91

2003-04

142

2004-05

119

2005-06

94

2006-07

63

2007-08

48

2008-09

53

2009-10 (YTD to end February 2010)

27

Table 1a: Absconds from HMP Ford 2007 by month and by index offence

2007

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Affray

1

Aggravated burglary

1

Attempted robbery

1

Breach of community service order

1

Breach of suspended sentence

1

1

Burglary

1

1

1

1

2

Burglary of a dwelling place

2

1

1

Burglary of non-dwelling place

1

1

Common assault

1

Conspiracy to import drugs

1

Customs evasion (drugs related)

1

Deception

1

1

Driving while disqualified

1

Illegal immigrant/detainee

1

Import/export/drug

1

Manslaughter

1

Murder

1

Other criminal offences

1

Possession of an offensive weapon

1

Possession of drugs with intent to supply

1

Possession of firearm with intent. Endanger life

1

Reckless driving

1

1

1

Robbery

1

1

1

1

Supplying drugs

1

1

1

Taking and driving away

1

Theft

2

3

1

Wounding with intent to inflict GBH

1

Wounding(inflicting GBH)

1

Table 1b: Absconds from HMP Ford 2008 by month and by index offence

2008

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Breach of bail

1

Breach of suspended sentence

1

Burglary

3

1

3

3

1

Burglary of non-dwelling place

1

Causing an explosion or placing explosive

1

Common assault

1

Deception

1

Driving while disqualified

1

1

1

Drunk

1

Escape lawful custody

1

1

Fraud

1

2

GBH

1

1

Inflict grievous bodily harm

1

1

Libel

1

Manslaughter

2

Other burglary offences

1

1

Possession drugs with intent

1

Possession of drugs with intent to supply

1

Possession of firearm with intent. Endanger life

1

Robbery

2

1

2

1

1

Supplying drugs

1

1

Taking and driving away

1

Theft

1

1

Trespass with intent

1

Table 1c: Absconds from HMP Ford 2009 by month and by index offence

2009

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Aggravated burglary

1

Burglary

3

1

1

1

2

Burglary of a dwelling place

1

1

1

Criminal damage

2

Deception

1

Fraud

1

Going equipped for stealing

1

Import/export/drug

1

Inflict grievous bodily harm

1

Murder

1

Other driving offences

1

1

Possession of an offensive weapon

1

Possession of drugs with intent to supply

1

Possession of firearm with intent. Endanger life

1

Reckless driving

1

Robbery

2

Taking and driving away

1

Theft

1

1

1

Wounding with intent to inflict GBH

1

Table 2a: Temporary release failures from HMP Ford 2007 by month and by index offence

2007

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Affray

1

Aggravated burglary

1

Attempted burglary

1

Attempted robbery

1

Burglary

1

1

1

1

Common assault

1

False instrument

1

Handling stolen goods

1

Murder

1

Possession drug with intent

1

Robbery

1

1

1

1

1

Theft

1

1

Possess firearm with intent

1

Table 2b: Temporary release failures from HMP Ford 2008 by month and by index offence

2008

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Affray

1

1

Attempted burglary

1

Blackmail

1

Burglary

1

1

1

1

Conspiracy burglary

1

Conspiracy to supply drugs

1

Death by dangerous driving

1

Drunk

1

GBH

1

Import/export drugs

2

Manslaughter

1

Murder

1

Robbery

1

1

1

Supplying drugs

1

1

Theft

1

1

Wounding with intent

1

Table 2c: Temporary release failures from HMP Ford 2009 by month and by index offence

2009

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Attempted murder

1

Burglary

1

1

Drive while disqualified

1

Handling stolen goods

1

Import/export drugs

1

1

2

Murder

1

Robbery

1

1

1

Taking and driving away

1

Note:

These figures have been drawn from live administrative data systems which may be amended at any time. Although care is taken when processing and analysing the returns, the detail collected is subject to the inaccuracies inherent in any large scale recording system.