Wednesday, February 23, 2005

12 Gibraltar linked people held in Spanish Prisons

There are 12 British passport holders with connections to Gibraltar being held in Spanish prisons, two in the Madrid consular district, and 10 in the Malaga consular district.

Of these, nine have been visited in accordance with Consular Prison visits Policy. The other three have declined consular assistance.

This was disclosed in the Commons in response to a question from Andrew Rosindell.

The UK Government said that consular staff in Spain aim to contact British Nationals within 24 hours of being informed of an arrest, and to make a visit within 48 hours. Unless prisoners have said that they do not wish to be visited, Consular staff at British posts should aim to visit all detainees whilst on remand at reasonable intervals as deemed necessary by the Consulate/Embassy. Thereafter, one visit is made after sentencing. Further visits are normally only made if a real need arises (family, health, social problems, etc). Consular staff are not trained to give legal advice and do not routinely attend court hearings.

"There is no requirement for consular staff to inform the Gibraltarian authorities about the arrest of British Nationals with connections to Gibraltar. However, Consular staff do normally inform the Gibraltarian authorities as a matter of courtesy. If the prisoner wishes, Consular staff will also keep family informed."

Related Link: British Embassies and Consulate in the Kingdom of Spain


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