The replacement jail for Barlinnie could be six years late while the current jail is over capacity a Glasgow MSP has said.

James Kelly Labour MSP raised the delay with Nicola Sturgeon.

He said the building is deemed “high risk” is “50% over capacity” and prisoners are having to share cells designed for one person.

Mr Kelly said “The chief executive also stated that current contingency plans in the case of an emergency involve simply moving prisoners to another location, with mattresses on the floor, which is unacceptable and unsustainable.

Evening Times:

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He asked Ms Sturgeon what steps the Scottish Government was taking to address the “chronic position of Barlinnie Prison”

Ms Sturgeon agreed there were serious issues and said the Government was paying “close and regular attention at Cabinet level”.

She said: “A replacement for Barlinnie prison is one of our key infrastructure priorities. The SPS is progressing with plans for the development of the new prison in Glasgow, and negotiations for the purchase of an identified site are under way.”

She added: “We acknowledge that, as a result of the recent rise in the prison population, interim measures are needed to improve current conditions at Barlinnie. Action will be taken in that regard.”