Lantau jail's security status faces review

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 30 December, 1998, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 30 December, 1998, 12:00am

The medium-security status of Ma Po Ping Prison on Lantau will be reviewed after several outbreaks of violence.

A spokesman for the Correctional Services Department said that while such prisons usually had tight security, the terrain of Ma Po Ping had made this difficult and created problems.

'A new medium security prison will be completed next August in Stanley to help ease overcrowding,' the spokesman said.

The Lantau prison, built in 1960, was upgraded from minimum to medium security in the mid-1970s when the number of serious crimes increased.

There are 12,016 inmates in Hong Kong, representing an overcrowding rate of 15 per cent.

The spokesman said the department would see whether Ma Po Ping Prison should remain a medium security jail after police completed investigations into a string of violent clashes.

More than 50 prisoners and two wardens were hurt in the latest fight on Monday when 240 inmates were in the dining hall.