£853 a night – Lib Dems reveal true cost cost of locking up prisoners in police cells

The BBC reports:

The cost of housing prison inmates in police cells is double the amount previously thought, the Lib Dems claim. The Ministry of Justice says it costs £385 a night to detain an inmate in a police station when prisons are full. But the Lib Dems say the true cost of ‘Operation Safeguard’ is £853 a night – a figure disputed by the government.

The article quotes Lib Dem justice spokesperson Paul Holmes:

For this amount of money, you could stay in the Ritz. … The government’s incompetence in managing our prison system is staggering and has left the taxpayer picking up a huge bill. Ministers have severely and consistently underestimated the knock-on costs of prison overcrowding. The government has put us in this hopeless position by failing to plan for the future while putting record numbers behind bars in an effort to appear tough on crime.”

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3 Comments

  • What a staggering number.
    It would be interesting to see how it breaks down.
    I wonder what knock on costs the home office have excluded from their figure.

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