Northern Ireland

Magilligan prison body scanner trial

The new body scanner at Belfast International Airport
Image caption A scanner similar to the one recently installed at Belfast International Airport is to be used on a three month trial

A state of the art security scanner has been installed at Magilligan prison near Limavady for a trial period.

Dissident republicans in Maghaberry prison near Lisburn have been engaged in a long running protest calling for an end to strip searching.

They argue that electronic scanners like those used at airports are a secure alternative.

Earlier this year, Justice minister David Ford announced trials of two types of scanners.


It's now been confirmed that a full body scanner was installed in Magilligan prison yesterday and a three month trial will start next week after staff are trained in its use.

The scanner is similar to one introduced at Belfast International airport earlier this month.

Speaking in the Assembly, the minister said another scanner will be installed in Hydebank Wood prison and young offenders centre in south Belfast next month.