British police called to prison to quell riot

13:14, January 02, 2011      

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Police were called to Ford open prison to quell a riot that began in the first hours of the new year when inmates smashed windows and set fires.

A spokesman for the Justice Ministry said there were no reports of injuries to prisoners or staff, adding that the riot began at around midnight as about 40 inmates triggered fire alarms and set one building ablaze.

Smoke could be seen rising from one prison building Saturday morning.

"Prison staff were forced to retreat and police and fire brigade have been called, and specialist teams of prison officers have been called in to deal with the incident," the spokesman said.

The prison, near Arundel, 95 kms south of London, can accommodate about 550 inmates, but concerns have been raised in the past about the way the facility has been operated.

The low-security prison houses offenders with less than two years remaining on their sentences.

Source: Xinhua
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