No action against accused prison staff

No disciplinary action will be taken against prison staff accused of failing to prevent the murder of Zahid Mubarek due to “insufficient evidence”, Community Care has learned.

In June, 20 members of staff were named in the report into how Zahid came to be battered to death by his racist cellmate Robert Stewart at Feltham young offender institution in 2000.

In a letter to Zahid’s family seen by Community Care this week, the director general of the prison service, Phil Wheatley, said he had “looked carefully” at the cases of all staff still employed by the service.

In the letter dated 14 August, Wheatley said: “While there is insufficient evidence to pursue disciplinary action, the comments in the inquiry are so worrying that we shall conduct individual performance reviews with a number of staff involved.”

The news emerged as the government admitted that a key recommendation of the inquiry, to end enforced cell-sharing, would not be implemented because of prison population pressures.

In its response to the 88 inquiry recommendations, published last week, the government said that while ending cell-sharing had been accepted in principle, it would still “be necessary for some time”.

The latest government figures, also published last week, showed there are just over 79,000 people in custody including almost 3,000 children and young people.

Imtiaz Amin, Zahid’s uncle, said he would continue discussions with the Home Office and warned the family would not accept “half-measures” in meeting the inquiry’s recommendations.

Government response to the Zahid Mubarek inquiry

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