While the recession is forcing Britons to cut down the cost of living, UK prisoners are leading a luxurious life, with direct access to Sky TV, video games and even English breakfast in bed.
After the revelation of the cushy life of Britain's lags, Jail bosses were left facing the flak from taxpayers, the Daily Star reports.
AdvertisementGlyn Travis, assistant general secretary of the Prison Officers' Association, said: "We have to ask the purpose of having games consoles and Sky TV in prisons. It plays no part in the rehabilitation of prisoners."
Shock figures showed more than 1,000 have Sky TV beamed directly into their cells, while 13,000 relax with games consoles. They can also get cash for good behaviour, apart from a full English breakfast in bed.
Satellite channels are available in communal areas at 20 prisons run directly by the Government.
But three private jails - still paid for by taxpayers - let 1,020 inmates enjoy Sky in their cells.he figures were revealed by the Ministry of Justice as it emerged that prisoners at HMP Ashwell, Leicestershire, played computer games during a riot.
To top it all, the prisoners are ignoring chances to escape because of the luxury conditions.
Matthew Elliott, head of the Taxpayers' Alliance, said: "While law-abiding families struggle to pay the bills, prisoners increasingly seem to have a cushy life."
The Prison Service has admitted paying 221,726 pounds for computer game systems to keep lags happy.
However, the Ministry of Justice said: "Privileges are earned by prisoners through good behaviour and performance and are removed if they fail to maintain acceptable standards."