The Prison Population in England & Wales
A Snapshot of People in Prison in May 21010
When talking about people in custody, we are including prisons, secure training centres and secure children’s homes. Our figures are based on Ministry of Justice statistics published on June 30, 2010.
Who is in custody?
The total of people in prison on 31 May 2010 was 85,500, an of 2,200 from a year before. The population in prisons was 85,000 (a rise of 2,200 from a year earlier), in Secure Training Centres (STCs) it was 270 and in Secure Children’s Homes (SCHs) it was 170.
Are there more men than women in prison?
Yes, there are. The male prison population increased by 3 per cent (an increase of 2,100 male prisoners) to 80,700 and the female prison population increased by 2 per cent (an increase of 80female prisoners) to 4,300 in May 2010 compared to May 2009.
How many prisoners have been sentenced to a term in custody?
There were 71,000 sentenced prisoners at 31 May 2010, an increase of 4 per cent (or 3,000 prisoners from the previous year. Ministry of Justice figures confirm that there were increases in those serving sentences of all sentence lengths except 6 months to less than 12 months, which fell by 1 per cent (down 30).
How many prisoners were serving short sentences in custody?
The number of prisoners serving a sentence of less than 6 months rose 17 per cent between May 2009 and May 2010 (up by 660 prisoners).
And how many were serving longer sentences?
The number of those serving sentences of 4 years or more increased by 6 per cent (up 1,400). The number of prisoners serving indeterminate sentences (Life sentences and indeterminate sentences for public protection - IPPs) increased by 8 per cent (up 930) to reach 13,000.
What do people go to prison for?
Amongst prisoners already sentenced, the largest proportionate increases since May 2009 were for theft and handling (up by 25 per cent), "other offences" (up by 19 per cent) and sexual offences (up by 14 per cent). The biggest proportionate decreases since May 2009 were for those serving sentences for fraud and forgery (down 21 per cent), motoring offences (down 113 per cent) and burglary (down 560, 8 per cent).
In terms of offence groups, amongst the remand population the largest proportionate increases since May 2009 were for "other offences" (up 7 per cent), drug offences (up 4 per cent) and sexual offences (up 3 per cent). The largest proportionate falls since May 2009 were seen in those serving sentences for motoring offences (down 31 per cent), fraud and forgery (down 14 per cent) and robbery (down 11 per cent).