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Ministry of Justice cuts 'risk 15,000 jobs'

10 August 2010 Last updated at 22:18 BST

Fifteen thousand jobs could be lost at the Ministry of Justice, a civil service union has warned, after a letter to senior officials revealed plans to cut £2bn from its budget.

The Public and Commercial Services Union claims that such cuts could not be delivered in England and Wales without closing some prisons and bringing courts "to a standstill". But the Ministry of Justice insists that it is only "discussing options" with the Treasury and that "no decisions have been made".

Precise detail of where the cuts will be made are expected to be finalised with Chancellor George Osborne in September, ahead of the government's spending review on 20 October.

The BBC's Home Affairs Editor Mark Easton reports.