Belmarsh (HM Prison)

Belmarsh (HM Prison)

Infobox HM Prison
name = HMP Belmarsh

size = 200px
caption =
opened = 1991
type = Adult Male/Category A
figures = 915 (September 2005)
location = Thamesmead, London
governor = Phil Wragg
prisonid = 254

HM Prison Belmarsh is a high security prison in the Thamesmead area of the London Borough of Greenwich in south-east London. Operational since 2 April 1991, the facility can hold 915 prisoners.

It is often used for the detainment of prisoners for terrorist related offences. In September 2006 the number of such prisoners was 51. [UK Parliament|date=8 September 2006|place=Written Answers|speaker=Tony McNulty|column=1701W|url=|title=Home Department - Terrorism]

Between 2001 and 2005 the prison was used to detain a number of people indefinitely "without charge or trial" under the provisions of the Part 4 of the Anti-terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001, leading it to be called the "British version of Guantanamo Bay" [ [ Belmarsh - Britain's Guantanamo Bay?] ] . The law lords later ruled that such imprisonment was discriminatory and against the Human Rights Act [ [ Terror suspects to be freed from Belmarsh] ]

The governor of Belmarsh Prison is Philip Wragg, governor since May 2008.

It was built on part of the East site of the former Royal Arsenal, Woolwich. It is adjacent/adjoined to Woolwich Crown Court, which is therefore used for high profile cases (including those concerning national security).

On May 4, 2007, there was a violent disturbance in the prison, Sky News reported. At least four prison guards were injured.Fact|date=June 2007

Notable detainees

*Jeffrey Archer - 2001 - Archer wrote about his stay in Belmarsh in the first volume of "A Prison Diary".
*Lotfi Raissi - 2001
*Abu Hamza al-Masri - 2004 - On 7 February 2006 Hamza was found guilty of 11 of the 15 charges he faced. He was sentenced to seven years to run concurrently for eight counts and 21 months for the others. He has already been in jail since May 2004 and awaiting extradition to the USA.
*Manfo Kwaku Asiedu - 2005
*Ronnie Biggs
*Dave Courtney
*Jonathan King
*Dhiren Barot
*Richard Tomlinson
*Steven Gerald James Wright
*Paul Magee
*Peter Curtis
*UK DrinkOrDie Members - 2005
*Michael Forwell. Marijuana smuggler. Spent One and a half years in Belmarsh fighting extradition to America where he was wanted in relation to the seizure of 72 tons of marijuana found aboard his boat, "Encounter Bay"

ee also

* List of prisons in the United Kingdom
* Broadwater Green


External links

* [,15,2,15,254,0 HMP Service - Prisons - Belmarsh]
* [ Location on Multimap]

readers digest. 'tracking the fox' august 1998

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