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Prisoners wages ‘given to victims’

Prisoners wages ‘given to victims’

Ministers have revealed that support for victims of crime will be boosted by up to £1 million annually.

The Ministry of Justice said that the cash will be be deducted from the wages of some 500 prisoners who work in communities, in some cases representing up to a 40% pay cut.

The move comes under Justice Secretary Kenneth Clarke's far-reaching Prisoners' Earnings Act – which came into effect on Monday.

Under the act, 40% of prisoners' wages over £20 per week can be given to Victim Support.

This percentage comes after tax, National Insurance and any court-ordered or child support payments.

Prisoners working inside jails could also see their weekly pay packet hit under further plans – despite the average being just £10.

Policing Minister Nick Herbert said: "For too long the financial burden of repairing the damage done by crime has fallen to the taxpayer alone.

"Making offenders pay financial reparation to victims will require them to take personal responsibility for their crimes and go some way towards making redress to victims through the funding of crucial support services."

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