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33 more inmates released on reduced sentence, bail

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A total of 55 inmates who were held at the Camp Street penitentiary before it went up in flames have been officially released as magistrates continue to conduct hearings at the Lusignan Prison in an effort to reduce the prison population.

News Room was reliably informed that 2 inmates were released on bail today while 31 had their sentences reduced and were set free.

Magistrates had released 22 inmates on bail yesterday.

Inmates who are eligible for bail are those who were remanded on charges of embezzlement; obtaining false document; uttering false information; threatening language; larceny; fraud; perjury, damage to property; smoking illegal substances or in possession of improvised smoking utensils; being in possession of cannabis below 50g; possession of cocaine below 25g and dangerous driving.

There was also a review of bail for persons who were charged for possession of cannabis from 51g to 1 kilogram, possession of cocaine 26g to 1killogram. However, conditions will be applied to bail granted to inmates that are charged for unlawful wounding and carnal knowledge.

Those eligible for reduced sentences are those prisoners who only had a few months more to serve behind bars.

Some 300 prisoners were yesterday transported from the temporary holding facility at the Lusignan Prison compound to the Mazaruni, New Amsterdam and Timehri prisons.

President David Granger disclosed that 8 prisoners are at large however the police has only released wanted bulletins for four but had subsequently retracted one, citing an error.

As it stands, wanted bullets have been issued for only three of the escapees.

Meanwhile, magistrates are expected to continue setting up temporary courts at the Cecil Kilkenny Prison Officers’ Training School near the Lusignan Prison to preside over cases of prisoners seeking reduced sentences and bail.

Once the issue of overcrowding is addressed, government intends to construct temporary facilities at Lusignan Prison to accommodate the remaining prisoners.

Officials say 1,018 inmates were at the Camp Street Prison went it was set ablaze on Sunday afternoon.

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