More electronic tags for convicts

In future, all those sentenced to between 8 months and 3 years in prison will be electronically tagged and allowed to serve their sentence at home. The new measures are contained in a letter sent to all Belgian gaols by the Ministry of Justice. Currently, those given sentences of between 8 months and 3 years normally don’t end up being locked up due to over-crowding in our prisons.

The convict is normally sent home to wait for an electronic tag to be issued. Sometimes this can be as long as 1 ½ years later. In future, electronic tags will be issued far more quickly.

There are also changes afoot to the penalties for those that break the rules of their curfew. Currently a convict that has been electronically tagged is send back to prison for even the most minor breach. However, from now on the decision to send a convict back to gaol will be made on a case by case basis.

A pilot project in which a voice recognition system is used to enforce the conditions of a convict’s home curfew is currently running. The system allows the authorities to check at any time of the day or night whether or not someone is really at home.

This system to be rolled out across the country for anyone that has been sentenced to longer between 8 months and three year's imprisonment.