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Confiscation of Unauthorised Property

Volume 560: debated on Tuesday 19 March 2013

Prison governors or directors have the power under prison rules to confiscate any unauthorised item found in the possession of a prisoner or elsewhere within a prison. In addition, following the excellent stewardship of my hon. Friend the Member for Pudsey (Stuart Andrew), the Prisons (Property) Act 2013, which received Royal Assent on 28 February, will, when commenced, provide prison governors and directors with a statutory power to destroy or otherwise dispose of unauthorised property confiscated from a prisoner.

Many of my constituents in South Staffordshire believe that many prisoners have far too many home comforts in their cells, and that there is far too much contraband in the prison system. What action has my hon. Friend taken to make sure that we run a spartan regime, and not a holiday camp?

My hon. Friend can reassure his constituents that prisoners will no longer watch Sky subscription television channels, and they will no longer watch 18-rated DVDs. As my hon. Friend knows, we are looking comprehensively at the incentives and earned privileges scheme in prisons to make sure that prisoners earn any incentives and privileges that they receive.