Prison population hits new high
The prison population in England and Wales has increased by almost 200 in a week, taking it to a new all-time high of 87,945, figures showed today.
The total is 1,310 short of the usable operational capacity and 196 higher than last week's record of 87,749, the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) said.
The rise in the number of people behind bars is being fuelled by the summer's riots, but the Government has insisted there will be enough prison places for anyone jailed over the looting and violence.
The usable operational capacity is 89,255, but this has increased from just 88,039 on August 5, the day after Mark Duggan, 29, was shot dead by police, prompting protests in Tottenham, north London, which then led to the disturbances in English cities.
The figure is the official total number of prisoners that the jails in England and Wales can hold, taking into account control, security and the proper operation of the planned regime, less 2,000 places.
No places are currently activated under Operation Safeguard, which would see police cells used to hold prisoners, an MoJ spokesman said.
Contingency measures could involve bringing on new accommodation early, using extra places in the public and private estate, or reopening mothballed accommodation.
The riots will see prisons swell by up to 1,000 extra inmates over the next year, figures released last month showed.
Gay couple beaten in park urge MPs to moderate language on gay marriage
Strewth mate. Aussies wave goodbye to Britain as it becomes too pricey to stay
World news in pictures
Far-right French historian, 78-year-old Dominique Venner, commits suicide in Notre Dame in protest against gay marriage
Oklahoma tornado latest: Obama pledges support for 'as long as it takes' to rebuild the suburb of Moore
- 1 'He was lucky he didn't die' - George Michael fell out of speeding car onto M1 motorway, according to eye witness
- 2 Gay couple beaten in park urge MPs to moderate language on gay marriage
- 3 After woman sells virginity for $780,000, here are the results of our prostitution survey
- 4 Far-right French historian, 78-year-old Dominique Venner, commits suicide in Notre Dame in protest against gay marriage
- 5 'It was just like the movie Twister': Man survives Oklahoma tornado by taking refuge in horse stall
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Find out what The Independent's resident travel expert has to say about one of the most beautiful small cities in the world
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.
Excellent Salary Package - £60K to £120K: Austen Lloyd: We have an exciting op...
£200 - £250 per day: Progressive Recruitment: Java Developer - Urgent Requirem...
£70000 - £95000 per annum + Bonus, flexible working hours, remote work: Progre...
£50000 - £56000 per annum + Benefits package, flexible working hours: Progress...