Christmas Home Leave has been granted by the Prison Service in Northern Ireland to 130 prisoners, it has been revealed.
A statement from the Department of Justice said that periods of temporary release have been granted “for varying periods from 23 December 2014 until 2 January 2015”.
“Conditions have been placed on all successful applicants,” the statement added.
It is understood that 64 prisoners have been released from Magilligan Prison, of which 13 are early release prisoners.
Meanwhile “47 prisoners will be released from Maghaberry Prison, seven of which are life sentence prisoners”.
Additionally 14 young offenders and five female prisoners are being released from Hydebank Wood Young Offenders Centre and Prison. Three of these are early release prisoners.
“All prisoners granted Christmas home leave have been the subject of a satisfactory risk assessment and have either successfully completed a home leave programme or undergone periods of unaccompanied testing in the community,” said the statement.
Home Leave for prisoners at Christmas is granted in accordance with two Schemes – one for Determinate Sentence Prisoners and one for Life Sentence Prisoners.
Remand prisoners are not eligible for Christmas Home Leave.
This morning 1694 prisoners were present at unlock in prisons in Northern Ireland.