MoJ takes money from inmate involved in "unlawful activity"

28 January 2019, 07:34 | Updated: 28 January 2019, 07:38

Cookham Wood Young Offenders Institution in Roches

A convicted murderer serving time in a jail in Leicestershire has had almost £8,000 seized from his bank account by a task force set up to disrupt organised crime in prisons.

The prisoner, who was serving his sentence at HMP Gartree, near Market Harborough, was thought to be involved in "unlawful activity" within the prison, the Ministry of Justice said.

The MoJ said a bank account belonging to the offender had received a "number of suspicious deposits" with £7,938.99 seized following an investigation.

Details of the prisoner and the "unlawful activity" have not been disclosed.

But the Government said organised criminals in prisons have been known to operate money laundering schemes to receive payment for debts, often as a result of drug deals.

It is the first success for the unit which has been in place since October.

Justice Secretary David Gauke said: "This unit forms an important part of our wider strategy to tackle organised crime and restore stability to prisons so that offenders have the chance to turn their lives around."