Extremist inmates moved to 'prison within a prison' at HMP Frankland

Faith Castro
July 6, 2017

Some of Britain's most prominent convicted extremist terrorists have been isolated in a separate jail wing for the first time in an attempt to prevent the recruitment and radicalisation of other prisoners.

Britain on Thursday launched the first prison built to accommodate some of the most risky and radicalised extremists. But a report by MailOnline claimed that hate preacher Anjem Choudary was one of the first inhabitants, alongside Michael Adebolajo, one of the men who murdered Fusilier Lee Rigby in Woolwich in 2013.

The Ministry of Justice announced on Thursday that it has populated a "separation centre" within a prison in County Durham, England.

"Extremism must be defeated wherever it is found", Prisons Minister Sam Gyimah said in a government statement.

However, fears remain that these separation centres will grant extremist terror offenders a unique status within the prison system. Two other centres, which are expected to be at HMP Full Sutton near York and at HMP Long Lartin in Worcestershire, are due to open in the coming months and the three centres together will hold up to 28 of the most subversive extremist prisoners.

More than 4,500 frontline prison officers have been trained to identify and challenge extremist views and new recruits will receive the training as standard.

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Last month, Adebolajo was said to be "brainwashing" fellow inmates in HMP Frankland. He was described as spending "most of his waking hours preaching his distorted form of Islam to anyone who will listen".

Official figures show there were 186 people in custody for terrorism-related offences and domestic extremism on March 31 this year, up 15 percent on the previous year.

However, some prison experts believe the initiative could be prejudicial as a long term solution.

Britain's first prison created to separate terrorists and extremists from other inmates is now operational, the government has said.

"The review proposed small units for a very few prisoners-and as a temporary expedient, not a permanent regime", he said. Anything else is just storing up an even more hard problem for when they are eventually released.

The government has been examining the issue of radicalization in prisons for a number of years.

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