Police sent in to quell riot at British prison

1st January 2011, Comments 0 comments

Specialist police were sent into a British prison on Saturday after 40 prisoners started a riot and set alight to buildings, authorities said.

The riot police and specialist prison officers were called in after inmates smashed windows, activated fire alarms and started fires at Ford open prison near Arundel in southeast England.

Hours after the violence began, TV pictures showed smoke rising from a building at the 1960s-era prison.

A Ministry of Justice spokesman said no prisoners or staff were believed to have been injured.

He said: "At around 12:00 am about 40 prisoners began smashing windows and setting off fire alarms at the establishment and set one building alight.

"Prison staff were forced to retreat and police and the fire brigade have been called.

"Specialist teams of prison officers have been called in to deal with the incident.

"We have no reports of any injuries to staff or prisoners at this stage."

The prison houses inmates with less than two years of their sentence left to serve.

In November, more than 250 inmates at a British prison for young offenders had to be moved to other jails after three nights of rioting.

© 2011 AFP

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