Inmates kept in prison longer than their jail term is costing taxpayers more than £25,000.
72 prisoners have been receiving compensation for the past five years, as payment for being locked up longer than their original jail term. According to a Sunday Post probe, inmates have received an average payout of £400, but some received £3,360, and another inmate was given £4,500.
A convicted robber in Northern Ireland even received compensation of £22,500 for staying a year longer than his release date.
The problem is in the paperwork. Mistakes have caused inmates’ to overstay, and freed the others by mistakes.
Earlier, it was discovered that 62 prisoners have been mistakenly released from Scottish jails in the last 10 years. These included dangerous and serious offenders who should not be let loose, and allowed to wreak havoc again.
These mistakes were revealed after the Scottish Prison Service was asked to answer a freedom of speech request.
The response showed that 23 inmates have been overstaying in Scottish jails last year. A year before that, 18 inmates were held in jail too long.
David Hines, founder of the National Victims’ Association laments that “there is no level playing field for victims and their families”, and the law isn’t exactly fair to everyone.
Scottish Conservative candidate for Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire John Lamont also voiced out how hard working Scots would be shocked to know that their hard-earned money is being spent by the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) as payouts for prisoners.
He urges the SPS to make “sure it releases all prisoners on time to avoid these payouts from the public purse”.
In response to the anger over the prisoner pay-outs, an SPS spokesman said that compared to the number of criminals that are sent to prison every year the errors are just a very small proportion.
“Every year approximately 30,000 warrants are processed and 10,000 convicted prisoners are released from custody”.