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Prison Management

Imprisonment was only one form of sentence the courts in Hong Kong would pass down to the offenders. The Colonial Government in the nineteenth century had relied on monetary punishment, public shaming, physical punishment as well as expulsion in forms of transportation and deportation to deal with the criminal class apart from sending them to the gaol.

Methods used in the punishment of offenders are closely associated with the society’s attitude towards crime and criminals. Hong Kong’s society had moved from retribution to rehabilitation in the post-War era with death penalty, corporal punishment and dietary punishment removed from the legislation. Prisoners nowadays receive comprehensive services from the professionally trained Correctional Services staff from day of their admission till their release from penal institutions and even in the community if they are required to undergo a period of after-care supervision upon release. This differed sharply from the pre-War prison services where prison staffs were mainly Europeans or Indians with the prime order of maintaining discipline within the prison.

Prisoners found in breach of prison disciplines would in general deal with by the prison Superintendent who had the authority to impose awards to prisoners. Offences which were serious and criminal in nature would be referred to the police for investigation and court sentence. Awards that the prison Superintendent could impose nowadays include separate confinement, loss of remission, loss of privileges and the loss of earning.

Introduction Punishment and Discipline Reception of Prisoners
Staff of Victoria Prison