Prison bosses have stood by their decision to allow a dangerous rapist into North Sea Camp – and admitted sex offenders and violent criminals can get equal access to the privileges of the open prison.
The Ministry of Justice defended the Freiston Shore facility after David Razzaque absconded. It confirmed murderers and rapists are free to be considered for day release and volunteer work in the community, just as any other prisoner.
In March 2014, our last available figures, there were 112 sex offenders at North Sea Camp, with a further 107 who had committed ‘violence against the person’.
The MoJ would not initially say what crime Razzaque, 46, was in prison for when he was at large from last Monday. He was arrested in Derby on Thursday, where he is alleged to have been in possession of a knife, and taken back into a closed prison.
A worker who had close contact with Razzaque in the prison system told The Standard: “He’s a violent, violent person.”
The worker, who did not wish to be named, added: “He is one of the most horrible human beings you will ever come across.”
The Standard has confirmed a series of details with Derbyshire Police that highlight the horrific nature of his offences.
A police spokesman confirmed that in 1995 he tied up and attacked a 19-year-old man with a hammer. He went on to rape the man’s 17-year-old girlfriend and threatened her with a knife. Her six-month-old baby was in the house at the time.
A year earlier he raped a 26-year-old woman at that same address in Derby.
Razzaque had already been sentenced to three years in prison for trying to stab a police officer after attacking his own mother.
The spokesman also confirmed Razzaque was sentenced to two life sentences for the two attacks, as well as a further nine years after he admitted abducting another woman with the intention of raping her in December 1994.
When asked why such an offender may have found his way to an open prison, the anonymous worker replied: “He should never have been there. He’s obviously one who beat the system.”
He added: “The public of Boston need to know about this.”
An MoJ spokesman told The Standard that prisoners are only allowed access to North Sea Camp – where prisoners are prepared for life back outside – after a ‘thorough risk assessment’.
They stressed offenders with long sentences will have already served most of their sentence in closed conditions.
The spokesman refused to answer questions on why Razzque was deemed suitable or if he has been involved in community work in Boston while at North Sea Camp.
They said absconder numbers are down and added: “Following a comprehensive review we have tightened the eligibility for open prisons and are taking a range of steps to help lower the numbers further.
“Open prisons and temporary licence are important tools in rehabilitating long-term offenders but they will not be used at the expense of public safety.”
In April last year Nicky Suddons, 26, was given a second life sentence for a knifepoint sex attack he carried out in Grantham while on a work placement with North Sea Camp. Lincoln Crown Court was told how he plotted the attack at North Sea Camp and had prepared a ‘rape kit’ for the attack.