Addiewell staff lost control after riot squad charged in

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By Rory Reynolds

OFFICIALS have denied reports of a full-scale riot at what has been branded Scotland’s plushest prison.

Two prison guards were taken to hospital after inmates went on the rampage at HMP Addiewell in West Lothian at around 7pm on Monday night.

But last night it emerged that prison staff lost control even after their riot team charged into the building.

Ambulance crews reported that staff lost control of the situation for a second time after their riot team had gone in.

They also confirmed that they took a 29-year-old warden to hospital with a cut to the back of his head and a “burst mouth”.

A spokesman for the Scottish Ambulance Service said: “We had our first response car at the prison by around 8pm.

Riot

“Our crews reported a 29-year-old male with a cut to the back of the head and a burst mouth, who we transported to St John’s Hospital in Livingston.

“The crew advised that there was an ongoing riot and we mobilised our special operations team, which provides care in difficult situations.

“By 9.30pm the crew reported that the prison was going into lockdown.

“The prison’s own riot team went in at 9.45pm, but it seems that the trouble flared up against at around 11pm.

“Our crews stayed on the scene until 1.10am.”

It is understood that a second warden was taken to hospital by prison staff later on.

However, Kalyx, the firm who run the private jail and Lothian and Borders Police insisted that only a small number of prisoners were involved and said that staff were in control at all times.

Damage

A spokesman for Kalyx, said: “We can confirm that a contained incident, involving a small number of prisoners, took place in one of the wings at HMP Addiewell on the evening of Monday 25th January and was brought under control.

“There has been minor damage caused, mainly as a result of burst pipes.

“Two prison officers were injured during the incident and were treated at hospital but have now been discharged.”

A police spokesman said that around 10 cons had been involved in the disturbance, which saw police on standby outside the prison for around five hours.

He said: “Lothian and Borders Police attended at Addiewell Prison last night to assist staff following a disturbance within. The prison staff remained in control of the prison throughout.

Violence

“A prison officer was taken to St John’s hospital for treatment to minor injuries and later discharged.

“Enquiries are now ongoing to identify those responsible for this incident.”

Kalyx will now have to carry out an investigation into the disturbance at the prison, which has been rocked by violence and riots in the past year.

The report will then be reviewed by the Scottish Prison Service, who oversee all of Scotland’s jails.

A spokeswoman for the Scottish Prison Service added: “I can confirm that there was an incident which started at 6.45pm on Monday and was concluded before midnight.

Mops

“There is an ongoing police investigation and we cannot comment any further.”

HMP Addiewell is a 750-prisoner facility with ensuite cells and flat screen TVs. It opened in December 2008 and has been plagued by problems ever since.

Last October around 30 prisoners attacked staff with mops and barricaded themselves into a hall for several hours.

And in August a prison warden had to be taken to hospital after being attacked by a violent prisoner.

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