Prison population at record high

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The prison population in England and Wales has hit another all-time high, figures revealed.

The number of inmates now stands at 88,179 – a rise of 13 on last week and just 1,203 short of the usable operational capacity, according to a Ministry of Justice spokesman. Yesterday’s announcement is the fifth time in a row that weekly figures show a record number of convicts in the country’s jails.

The rise has been fuelled by the summer’s riots, but the Government insists there will be enough prison places for anyone jailed over looting and violence.

The usable operational capacity was increased since Mark Duggan, 29, was shot dead by police, prompting protests in Tottenham, north London, which then led to the disturbances in English cities.