Special Report: Prisoners could be categorised based on risk

Prisoners would be categorised based on the degree of risk they
pose to other prisoners and prison staff under a plan being
considered at the second seminar of the Mubarek inquiry,
writes Amy Taylor.

The participants of the seminar also considered whether each
prisoner’s risk category should be known to the prisoner
themselves and other inmates if the proposal was implemented.

Zahid Mubarek was beaten to death with a table leg by his
cellmate Robert Stewart at Feltham Young Offender Institution in
March 2000.

Inquiry chair Mr Justice Keith said there were a number of
problems with the current system for assessing whether a prisoner
poses a risk to his cellmate which was introduced after Mubarek was

 “Many officers assess a prisoner as
‘high-risk’, even though the risk, which has been
identified is a risk of self-harm or a risk from other
prisoners,” he said.

“The impression I am getting is that outside the specific
context of cell-sharing, little is being done in prison to assess
the risks posed by a prisoner to staff or other inmates.”

The third seminar will cover safer cells and cell-sharing. There
will be six seminars in total running until the beginning of

Mr Justice Keith plans to publish his report on the events
leading up to Mubarek’s death and recommended measures to
reduce the risk of a similar tragedy taking place again as soon as

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