Jim Armitage: Will Sodexo and Capita be brought to book?

Outlook Incidentally, if misdemeanours by private contractors are to be punished in the Ministry of Justice as Mr Grayling suggests, one wonders at what depth of poor standards the whip should be applied.

Sodexo was recently found to have held a woman in solitary confinement at HMP Bronzefield for five years, which the chief inspector of prisons described yesterday as "cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment". Should Sodexo do a spot of "corporate renewal" before winning future MoJ contracts?

Capita, which has just picked up one of the G4S/Serco tagging contracts, has been accused by some in the legal profession of "endemic screw-ups" in the way it provides translators for non-English speakers in court cases. Time for some gentle "purging" at Capita, perhaps?

More likely, given the Government's overiding animus towards state provision of services, such alleged misdemeanours will be quietly overlooked.