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Prison officers sacked for racist comments

By Times Guardian reporter

Seven prison officers at a Sheppey jail have been sacked for a series of racist comments.

The words, which have not been made public, were shared with a group on the internet messaging serving WhatsApp.

All officers involved, initially believed to be in double figures, were suspended as soon as allegations were made.

Elmley Prison in Eastchurch
Elmley Prison in Eastchurch

It is understood that some quit before the investigation was completed and some launched appeals.

A prison service spokesman said: "We will not tolerate racism or discrimination in our prisons and will not hesitate to take action where there is evidence of misconduct by prison staff.

"Seven members of staff have been dismissed as a result of our investigation and staff at HMP Elmley have now received additional diversity training."

Elmley holds 1,252 prisoners, including many on remand from Kent courts.

It looks after young offenders, vulnerable prisoners, foreign nationals, lifers, drug addicts and some "very old" and ill prisoners.

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