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Hollesley: Prisoner disciplined after pet rabbit and hutch were discovered in jail

10:23 01 July 2014

Pet rabbit found in jail

Pet rabbit found in jail


A Suffolk prison is facing embarrassment after an animal-loving inmate was found to be keeping a rabbit as a pet.


The discovery of the rabbit –which has been confirmed by the Prison Service – occurred at Hollesley Bay open prison, near Woodbridge, and led to the prisoner being disciplined.

News of the find emerged only a few days after it was revealed the jail was the target of a burglary in which a thief stole tobacco worth £3,000 from the main stores.

It is understood prisoners working outside the jail found the domesticated rabbit and took it back into Hollesley.

A hutch was then constructed in which the animal was kept for several days.

When the rabbit was found it was confiscated and taken to a rescue centre.

It is not known if the hutch was found inside a cell or elsewhere in HMP Hollesley’s grounds.

It is against rules for prisoners to keep pets in prison.

A Prison Service spokesperson said: “This prisoner has been disciplined and the animal immediately handed to a rescue centre.”

It is understood the incident occurred several weeks ago.

Last weekend it emerged Hollesley had become a victim of crime in its own right after tobacco worth an estimated £3,000 was stolen before it could be sold to prisoners.

Up to 300 packets of tobacco were reported to have been taken from the jail’s main storeroom during the overnight raid.

An imprint of a training shoe was found near the scene, although as yet the thief has not been found. Nor, it appears, has the tobacco.

The culprit is reported to have broken in through a skylight before removing a ceiling tile to gain entry to the storeroom.

The theft occurred between 4.30pm on Monday, June 16, and 8am on Tuesday, June 17.

A spokesperson for HMP Hollesley Bay said: “Earlier this month a quantity of tobacco products was stolen from HMP Hollesley Bay.

“This is now a matter for the police. Such items are purchased by prisoners using their own money.”

Last year thieves stole tobacco worth around £25,000 during raids in April and October at HMP Leyhill near Bristol.



  • In the U.S..A some prisoners are allowed to have dogs to train for security , as aids to disabled vets and other citizens .it also teach the prisoners what it's like to have something to rely on them for love and support !

    Report this comment

    Violet Adlam

    Sunday, July 6, 2014

  • I agree totally with the comment made by EMR, surely with all the bad things that go on in prisons doing something positive shouldn't be punished

    Report this comment


    Tuesday, July 1, 2014

  • I would have thought that having a small pet like that would actually have been positive for his rehabilitation. Learning to care for another creature could be a good learning experience; unless he's got some sort of sadistic tendencies (which it sounds like he hasn't) it certainly wouldn't have done any harm.

    Report this comment


    Tuesday, July 1, 2014

  • As long as the rabbit was not wanted by it's original owners (I know they escape - I know they get dumped), I cannot see the harm in the prisoners keeping it. Good on them - they had taken the time to make a hutch, and were obviously wanted to look after it. Given the number of abandoned animals perhaps this would be a good way forward (America runs schemes were prisoners can look after and train dogs). Surely a better past time than the drugs etc., and gives the prisoners something positive to do.

    Report this comment


    Tuesday, July 1, 2014

  • I'm suprised it didn't abscond before it was found!

    Report this comment


    Tuesday, July 1, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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