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Procedure Properties

Title: Property of Prisoners
Category: Custodial Operations - Standard Operating Procedure
Version: 01
Implement Date: 31 May 2012
Application: Custodial Operations
Availability: Public

Authority

Appendices and Forms

Operational instructions

  • Prisoner Jewellery

Associated Custodial Operations Standard Operating Procedures

Local Procedures

QCSA Training Manual

QCS Procedures

Policies

  • Whole of Government Code of Conduct
  • Instrument of Delegation of Chief Executive Powers - Corrective Services Act 2006 (in-confidence)
  • Instrument of Delegation of Chief Executive Powers - Public Service Act 2008 (in-confidence)
  • Instrument of Financial and Travel Delegations (Department of Community Safety) (in-confidence)

Review Date: May 2016

Ownership: Custodial Operations

Custodial Operations Standard Operating Procedure - Property of Prisoners


Performance Standard
1.Procedure Requirements
2.Definitions
3.Administration of Property by Public Trustee
4.Property Limits and Possession
4.1Property limit
4.2Exclusions from property limits
4.3Approved photographs
4.4Additional personal property
4.5Possession of personal property
4.6Hire television sets
4.7Electrical equipment
4.8Property accompanying a visitor (hand in)
4.9Other delivery of property
4.10Purchase of property by a prisoner
4.11Manufactured hobby items
5.Storage and Safeguarding of Prisoner Property
5.1Safe storage and administration of valuables
5.2Dangerous items
5.3Safe guarding property in an prisoner's possession
5.4Temporary absence of a prisoner
6.Recording a Prisoner's Property
6.1Compiling a record of items of property
6.2Receiving personal property
6.3Property item condition
6.4Issuing personal property
6.5Reception of property and prisoner
7.Prisoner Property Transfer
7.1Return of personal property upon transfer
7.2Low security facilities
7.3Failure to produce property that has been issued
7.4Packaging of property
7.5Dispatching property
7.6Receiving transferred property
7.7Notification of property discrepancies
7.8Transport of property by Queensland Rail
7.9Transfer to police custody
7.10Reception from police custody
7.11Discharge of a prisoner
8.Disposal of Prisoner Property
8.1Death of an prisoner
8.2Property of an escapee
8.3Escapee returned to custody
8.4Seized property
8.5Unclaimed property
8.6Handing out property
8.7Acquisition of prisoner's property
9.Compensation

Performance Standard

To provide for the storage, recording, safe keeping, management, transfer and disposal of the property of a prisoner in a corrective services facility-

Safety and Security - Our Principles

Refer - Safety and Security - Our Principles (in-confidence) - Incentive

Chief Inspector Healthy Prisons 2007 - Standard 3.21 -3.25

Refer - Healthy Prisons Handbook

Standard Guidelines for Corrections in Australia - Standards 1.7, 1.8

Refer - Standard Guidelines for Corrections in Australia revised 2004

Authority

  • Corrective Services Act 2006, ss. 24, 46-48, 138-142, 265, 311-319
  • Corrective Services Regulation 2006, s. 45
  • Criminal Law Amendment Act 1945, Part 3
  • Justices Act 1886
  • Penalties and Sentences Act 1992, Part 10
  • Public Trustee Act 1978, ss. 19(2), 29, 65, 80, 90-117
  • Trust Accounts Act 1973

1. Procedure Requirements

The General Manager of a corrective services facility must ensure the storage, recording, safe keeping, management, transfer and disposal of prisoner property. Refer Corrective Services Act 2006 (CSA) s. 317; Corrective Services Regulation 2006 (CSR) s. 45; Instrument of Delegation of Chief Executive Powers - Corrective Services Act 2006 (in-confidence)

The Chief Executive or delegate may impose conditions about the use of property by a prisoner in accordance with CSA s. 317 and must provide for the management of prisoner property, including the safe keeping of a prisoner's property held in a facility's property store.

The General Manager must establish a process which ensures that a prisoner's property and valuables are fully inventoried and recorded electronically on the integrated offender management system (IOMS) entries should clearly describe each item including but not limited to size, shape, colour and any specific features. IOMS must be updated whenever additional property is added or property is sent out.

Refer also procedure - Prisoner Monies

2. Definitions

Prisoner property means personal property that comes into the lawful possession of a prisoner in a manner authorised by Queensland Corrective Services (QCS) standard operating procedures. Prisoner property includes items stored within a facility and items issued to a prisoner for his/her use. Consumable items, magazines or periodicals are not defined as prisoner property for the purposes of this standard operating procedure.

For the purposes of this standard operating procedure, a “transporting officer” means the corrective services officer responsible for transporting a prisoner's property between facilities.

3. Administration of Property by Public Trustee

In accordance with the provisions of the Public Trustee Act 1978 (PTA), the Public Trustee is responsible for managing a prisoner's affairs if-

  1. the prisoner is serving a sentence of imprisonment for life or for a term of three years or more. Refer PTA ss. 90-97;
  2. the prisoner is subject to an indefinite sentence. Refer Penalties and Sentences Act 1992, part 10; PTA ss. 90-97;
  3. the prisoner is directed to be detained under the Criminal Law Amendment Act 1945 part 3. Refer PTA ss. 90-97;
  4. a court makes a protection order and appoints the Public Trustee to manage the prisoner's estate. Refer PTA s. 65;
  5. a court authorises the Public Trustee to perform any duty in relation to the estate, rights or powers of an incapacitated person. Refer PTA s. 80;
  6. the prisoner dies intestate or the next of kin, solicitor or executor cannot be determined or located. Refer PTA s. 29 and section 7 of this standard operating procedure; or
  7. there is unclaimed property and ownership cannot be determined. Refer PTA ss. 97A-117 and section 7 of this standard operating procedure.

For each of the above circumstances, the Chief Executive or delegate must ensure that the Public Trustee is advised. A notice advising that the Public Trustee is administering a prisoner's affairs must be placed on the prisoner's Offender File.

Refer CSA s. 311(4) for matters relating to requests for payment by the Public Trustee.

A copy of the notification that the Public Trustee will no longer administer a prisoner's affairs must be placed on the prisoner's Offender File. Refer PTA s. 92

The Chief Executive or delegate may apply to the Public Trustee to resume management of a prisoner's affairs. A copy of the notification that the Public Trustee agrees to resume management of the prisoner's affairs must be placed on the prisoner's Offender File. Refer PTA s. 93; Instrument of Delegation of Chief Executive Powers - Public Service Act 2008 (in-confidence).

4. Property Limits and Possession

Refer also standard operating procedure - Barrier Controls- prohibited things

4.1 Property limit

Refer CSA s. 317(5) and CSR s. 45 (1)(a) and (b)

A prisoner must be informed upon reception at a facility that the total volume of prisoner property the facility will hold, including property issued and held in a cell or room, must not be greater in volume than one large suitcase (0.25m3). In the case of the alternate storage systems employed the Southern Queensland and Lotus Glen Correctional Centres prisoner property is limited to a total weight of 8 kg. The following items must be included within the allowance, subject to approval by the Chief Executive or delegate and dependent on the facility's electrical capabilities-

  1. one radio/ CD player (length, including speakers, not to exceed 500mm);
  2. one walkman style radio/CD player;
  3. one desk-top fan (blade size not to exceed 34cm); and
  4. any other electrical/electronic equipment.

Subject to the discretion of the Chief Executive or delegate, property in excess of the allowance is not to be accepted into the facility. If a prisoner's property exceeds the allowance the prisoner must choose items to dispose of by-

  1. handing the items out to a relative or nominated person;
  2. arranging for the items to be stored at the prisoner's expense;
  3. donating the items to a nominated charity; or
  4. disposing of by other suitable means.

If a prisoner declines to choose items to dispose of, the Chief Executive or delegate must arrange for the commercial storage of the excess and advise the prisoner that storage fees will be deducted from his/her trust account.

4.2 Exclusions from property limits

Refer CSR s. 45

For example, a wheelchair, speech synthesiser or hearing aid may be excluded from the value limit.

4.3 Approved photographs

For the purpose of this standard operating procedure, the term photograph is inclusive of pictures or images produced or transmitted by media such as digital cameras, scanners and copiers.

The Chief Executive or delegate may allow a prisoner to possess personal photographs in a corrective services facility (refer CSA s. 317 and Instrument of Delegation of Chief Executive Powers - Corrective Services Act 2006 (in-confidence)) .

Approved photographs must -

  1. only depict human subjects who are fully clothed (meaning not unclothed, partially clothed, or wearing underwear or swimwear);
  2. not depict groups of children in a school, childcare, sporting or organisational context; and
  3. only depict children who are directly related to the prisoner and who are not known to be victims of the prisoner; and
  4. a family relationship (relatedness or connection by blood or marriage or de facto relationship or adoption) must exist between the prisoner and a child/ren depicted in a photograph which must be declared by the parent/guardian of the child/ren (see next paragraph for further requirements).

The onus to establish a family relationship between a prisoner and a child depicted in a photograph to the sufficient satisfaction of the Chief Executive or delegate will be on the parent/guardian of the child. This must include the parent/guardian submitting a Statutory Declaration with the child's photograph which declares their parent/guardianship status of the child/ren and the established family relationship between the prisoner and the child/ren..

A person's declaration may be taken by-

  1. a justice, commissioner for declarations or notary public under the law of the State, the Commonwealth or another State; or
  2. a lawyer; or
  3. a conveyancer, or another person authorised to administer an oath, under the law of the State, the Commonwealth or another State.

Refer Oaths Act 1867 and http://www.courts.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/88555/gen-f-qld-stat-dec.pdf

The General Manager must ensure that the photographs are stamped on the reverse with the prisoners IOMS number denoting ownership.

4.4 Additional personal property

Refer CSR s. 45(4)

With the approval of the Chief Executive or delegate, a prisoner may acquire additional items of personal property provided the property limit is not exceeded and the value of an individual item does not exceed $500.00.

Sources of additional property include-

  1. visitors bringing personal property to the facility;
  2. personal property mailed or delivered to a facility;
  3. a prisoner purchasing items of personal property through sales to prisoner's arrangements or from elsewhere outside a facility; and
  4. manufacture of items by prisoner's approved to undertake a hobby.

4.5 Possession of personal property

Personal property must not be issued to a prisoner unless approved and the prisoner has completed administrative form - Acknowledgement of Responsibility for Property. The form signed in respect of the initial issue of items is sufficient for subsequent issues of items. Officers must confirm that a signed form of responsibility is on the prisoner's property file before any personal property is issued on subsequent occasions.

Where property is a replacement item the item should be returned to the store for disposal at which time the replacement will be issued on a one for one basis and recorded on IOMS.

For personal property a prisoner is permitted to have in their possession refer operational instruction - Prisoner Jewellery

4.6 Hire television sets

The Chief Executive or delegate may require that a prisoner have a television set in the prisoner's cell or room only by a hire arrangement. A prisoner must be advised of this in writing when received into a facility. The prisoner must acknowledge receiving this advice by signing a copy of the written notification that must include the prisoner's authority for payment of the hire fee from his/her trust account and it must be placed on his/her property file. Refer CSA s. 314

4.7 Electrical equipment

At the discretion of the Chief Executive or delegate, a prisoner may have electrical items. Refer CSA s. 317(2)(b), (3) and (4)

Any electrical item designed to produce heat through an element should not ordinarily be issued to a prisoner because of the high current draw of such equipment and its capacity to overload electrical circuits.

An electrical item that operates from mains supply 240v must be checked and duly certified by an appropriately qualified person as safe to use before being issued to a prisoner, unless used on a circuit with an earth leakage safety system.

The cost of the initial and subsequent certification must be borne by the prisoner. Refer CSA s. 317(3)

Nothing in this standard operating procedure or any other procedure related to prisoner property will prohibit the Chief Executive or delegate from making a discretionary decision to refuse to allow any item of electrical equipment or a class of items of electrical equipment to be issued.

4.8 Property accompanying a visitor (hand in)

A prisoner must apply in writing to have items of personal property brought into a facility.

Refer administrative form - Prisoner Property Hand In

A written approval should be made available for the prisoner to send to his/her visitor as the authority to bring with the property into the facility. The relevant officer must receive such property only if it is accompanied by the authorisation.

An officer receiving items of property from a visitor must provide a detailed receipt for the property. Copies of the receipt are to be given to-

  1. the visitor;
  2. the prisoner for whom the property is intended; and
  3. the store, where it must be placed on the prisoner's property file.

An officer must check personal property received from a visitor in the presence of the prisoner for whom it is intended, and enter details on IOMS. The entry is to be signed by both the prisoner and the officer.

If an officer has reason to believe that an envelope contains written or recorded material consisting an interview, or statement from a prisoner that has not been authorised under CSA s. 132, the material must not be issued to the prisoner. Refer procedure - Interviewing of offenders

4.9 Other delivery of property

Refer standard operating procedure - Mail - Prisoner Mail

Items of property received by post, courier or other means which has not been previously approved for issue and where there is a return address should be returned to the sender. Where there is no return address the items should be placed in the prisoner's property and, marked NOT FOR ISSUE. The prisoner must be advised to make arrangement for the non approved item to be handed out.

An officer must enter details of the property received on IOMS in the presence of the prisoner. Monies must be managed in accordance with procedure - Prisoner Monies (refer CSA ss. 311-316).

4.10 Purchase of property by a prisoner

A prisoner who purchases property from sales to prisoner's schemes, the facility canteen or other sources must not gain access to that property until it has been entered on IOMS (refer Standard operating procedures - Prisoner Purchasing; Prisoner Monies).

If an item purchased causes the prisoners property to exceed the allowed property limit then the prisoners should be advised and steps taken to reduce the property to within limits by handing items out.

4.11 Manufactured hobby items

A prisoner approved to undertake a hobby which produces an item of property defined in this standard operating procedure must declare the item when completed.

A person authorised to approve a prisoner to undertake a hobby or responsible for purchasing materials for hobby work must advise the prisoner of the need to declare items of property produced by the hobby. A prisoner who manufactures an item of personal property from an approved hobby is to take the completed item to the store officer to declare it. The store officer must record the item on IOMS.

5. Storage and Safeguarding of Prisoner Property

A prisoner's approved property not issued to the prisoner must be appropriately stored in a safe, secure and hygienic manner during the prisoner's period of detention. A prisoner must sign administrative form - Acknowledgement of Responsibility for Property accepting full responsibility for all items of property issued to them while in the facility.

The Chief Executive or delegate is responsible for safe guarding a prisoner's personal property held in a facility's property store. A prisoner's property must be stored in a manner that will prevent damage.

Soiled clothing should be cleaned prior to permanent storage. Cleaning of clothing undertaken externally must be at the prisoner's expense.

If a prisoner notifies staff that he/she is being threatened by other prisoner's and fears that his/her property will be stolen, the Chief Executive or delegate must ensure such property is secured in the store immediately.

A prisoner is not permitted to sell, borrow, lend or barter any item of issued property or items of stored property to another prisoner. This includes the hand out of property from one prisoner for subsequent hand in to another prisoner. A prisoner may give his/her property to another prisoner (upon the first mentioned prisoner being discharged) but only with the written approval of the Chief Executive or delegate (refer CSA s. 317).

Those responsible for the safe guarding of a prisoner's personal property include-

  1. officers appointed or nominated to property store administration;
  2. officers supervising accommodation areas or areas containing prisoners' personal property;
  3. transporting officers during the period of transfer between facilities;
  4. a prisoner to whom personal property has been issued; and
  5. officers holding a delegation under CSA s. 317.

A prisoner must acknowledge in writing that they understand that from time to time, QCS employees or service providers may, for official purposes, enter a cell or room in which the personal property is held in the absence of the prisoner.

Refer administrative form - Acknowledgement of Responsibility for Property

Such entry will not constitute grounds for a claim against QCS for lost or damaged property except if an employee acting wilfully or negligently contributes to, or causes, the loss or damage.

If a facility's routine does not allow a prisoner to secure personal property, the general manager may -

  1. refuse permission for personal property to be issued to the prisoner; or
  2. approve the issue of personal property only after the prisoner has acknowledged in writing that he/she has been told of the lack of security of the property and the resultant risk of loss of the property.

5.1 Safe storage and administration of valuables

Prisoner property listed as "valuables" and accepted for storage at a facility must be stored securely with restricted staff access.

All valuable property must be stored in a secure location in the reception store or the prescribed area in a low security facility. The Chief Executive or delegate may order that a prisoner's valuables or sensitive property be stored in another secure location. On reception, a prisoner must be counselled about property and advised to hand out any valuables or other property in excess of the maximum permitted.

Each valuable property item must be entered on IOMS . A print out of all items valuables' must be maintained. Officers entering the details on IOMS must sign and date the print out. The signed print out must be attached to a sealed envelope or lock/heat sealed plastic bag containing the valuables.

For paper envelopes the envelope flap must be sealed with tape and the reception store officer must record name and signature across the tape and date the envelope. The envelope must be marked with the prisoner's name and general property bin number.

Lock sealed plastic bags must contain a label recording the prisoner's name, IOMS number, locking tag number (for locking bags only), prisoner's signature (to verify locking tag number matches the locking tag number recorded on the label), the name and signature of the witnessing reception store officer, the prisoner's property number and the date the bag was sealed. This label is to be displayed inside the bag and then the bag is sealed using the identified locking tag.

Heat sealed plastic bags must contain a label recording the prisoner's name, IOMS number, the name and signature of the witnessing reception store officer, the prisoner's property number and the date the bag was sealed. This label is to be displayed inside the bag and then the bag is heat sealed. The reception store officer must record name and signature along each heat seal in permanent marker to verify the integrity of the sealed plastic bag.

Whenever it is necessary for an officer to access a prisoner's valuables envelope, the officer must-

For paper envelopes-

  1. verify that the current valuables envelope is intact (report/investigate any discrepancies);
  2. open the valuables envelope and complete the required task;
  3. place the broken envelope in a new envelope to track access;
  4. ensure the new valuables envelope flap is sealed with tape;
  5. sign across the tape, record the date, the prisoner's name and general property bin number on the new valuables envelope (only required if the valuables are stored in a different location to the prisoner's property);
  6. ensure an updated print out of valuables that has been signed and dated by the officer is attached to the new valuables envelope or sealed plastic bag before storage if the valuables are stored in a different location to the prisoner's property and property file.

For lock sealed plastic bags-

  1. verify that the current valuables sealed plastic bag is intact (report/investigate any discrepancies);
  2. open the sealed valuables plastic bag and complete the required task;
  3. complete a new label recording the prisoner's name, IOMS number, locking tag number, prisoner's signature (to verify locking tag number matches the locking tag number recorded on the label), the name and signature of the witnessing reception store officer, the prisoner's property number and the date the bag was sealed. This label is then placed in front of the previous label inside the bag to track access;
  4. the bag is sealed using the identified locking tag;
  5. ensure an updated print out of valuables that has been signed and dated by the officer is attached to the new valuables envelope or sealed plastic bag before storage if the valuables are stored in a different location to the prisoner's property and property file.

For Heat sealed plastic bags-

  1. verify that the current valuables sealed plastic bag is intact by checking for prisoner's signature recorded on heat seals (report/investigate any discrepancies);
  2. open the valuables heat sealed plastic bag and complete the required task;
  3. complete a new label recording the prisoner's name, IOMS number, prisoner's signature, the signature of the witnessing reception store officer, the prisoner's property number and the date the bag was sealed. This label is then stapled to the front of the previous label inside the bag to track access;
  4. the bag is heat sealed and the prisoner or reception store officer signs the heat seals to verify the integrity of the plastic bag;
  5. ensure an updated print out of valuables that has been signed and dated by the officer is attached to the new heat sealed plastic bag before storage.

Access to prisoner property and valuables must be restricted to authorised officers only.

A prisoner employed in a reception store must not have access to valuables or unsupervised access to other prisoner property areas.

5.2 Dangerous items

  1. all weapons, including firearms, ammunition, knives (other than cutlery or tools), brought in by an prisoner must be disposed of (eg. handed out or stored commercially at the prisoner's expense) as soon as practicable;
  2. medication must be handed to a registered nurse; and
  3. alcohol is to be stored for a limited period only and the prisoner must arrange for it to be handed to a person outside the facility or to discard the contents of containers under supervision. If the prisoner elects to hand out alcohol, it must be stored in a secure place with limited access until handed out.
  4. Where a mobile phone is brought in through a prisoner's property the prisoner must arrange for it to be handed out to a person outside the facility.

5.3 Safe guarding property in an prisoner's possession

Irrespective of any acknowledgement of responsibility a prisoner signs, every effort must be made by all officers to safeguard prisoner property when operational considerations inhibit the prisoner's ability to do so.

5.4 Temporary absence of a prisoner

Officers supervising accommodation areas must ensure that a prisoner's cell is night locked when the prisoner is absent temporarily for medical treatment, court appearances etc, irrespective of the acknowledgement of responsibility process described herein.

6. Recording a Prisoner's Property

In a facility, each prisoner's personal property and valuables must be fully inventoried and recorded electronically on IOMS. A property file must be raised for each prisoner at the time of reception.

All paper records pertaining to the prisoner's property management, including applications, acknowledgement of responsibility for property forms, hand in and hand out forms and sundry correspondence, are to be placed on the file in date order. The file must be maintained and accorded the status of other prisoner files and must be handled and safeguarded accordingly. The file must accompany the prisoner when transferred. Refer procedure - Offender File Management (in-confidence)

When a prisoner makes a request for repair or replacement of a purchased item through the sales to prisoners process. The item/s while off site must have the status updated on IOMS to NOT ISSUED. The status must include a descriptive comment detailing the location of the item.

6.1 Compiling a record of items of property

All property and transactions related to a prisoner's property must be recorded on IOMS.

6.2 Receiving personal property

As a minimum, the following descriptions of personal property must be recorded, including appropriate particulars-

  1. description of the item/garment (eg. shirt - green, long sleeves, cotton);
  2. brand name;
  3. style/model number;
  4. serial number, other identifying number or any distinguishing features; and
  5. the description of items listed as "valuables" must refer to colour (eg white metal, yellow metal, red stone). The description is not to state an item is "silver" or "gold" or the name of any other metal or gemstone.

6.3 Property item condition

The apparent condition of the item must be selected from appendix - Condition Code Prisoner Private Property and electronically selected from the condition menu column on IOMS. No monetary value is to be indicated. In the event of a subsequent claim, the original value must be ascertained and the residual value calculated under the listing against the Condition column.

Any item issued to a prisoner is to be considered to have a condition description of Poor in the event of any subsequent claim for compensation for loss or damage.

Items listed as condition description Poor are to retain that description when issued to a prisoner.

6.4 Issuing personal property

All property issued must be recorded on IOMS The prisoner who owns the property is to sign and enter the date property was issued. The prisoner must sign against every entry that indicates property has been removed from the facility.

6.5 Reception of property and prisoner

For the purposes of this section, “nominated person“ means the corrective services officer responsible for the prisoner's property store in a facility (usually the storekeeper).

All property accompanying a prisoner transferred from police custody to the custody of QCS must be accepted irrespective of the amount and checked against the police property sheet. Any open food stuff must be noted and should be disposed of in front of the prisoner. Unopened food stuff should be placed in the prisoners property for issue.

If an arrangement exists for police to transfer property in a sealed transfer bag, officers may sign the police property sheet as an acquittance to the police for the sealed bag of property, provided-

  1. all copies of the police property sheet contain a notation that the property is sealed in a transfer bag and is correct;
  2. the receiving officer, a police officer delivering the property and the prisoner, sign a notation on the property sheet that the transfer bag was sealed when delivered to the facility;
  3. the officer must retain one copy of the police property sheet and place it on the prisoner's property file; and
  4. the officer must check property transferred in a sealed bag as soon as practicable in the prisoner's presence.

In the event of a discrepancy, officers are to provide details in writing, to the police officer responsible for despatching the property from the watch house. A copy of the advice must be placed on the prisoner's property file.

If property is not contained in a transfer bag or apparent tampering with the seal or the bag is evident, each item must be sighted by an officer and checked against the police property sheet in the presence of escorting police officers-

  1. the officer must sign copies of the police property sheet as a receipt for property only after the property has been checked against the listing on the property sheet;
  2. details of any discrepancies are to be noted on each police property sheet and initialled by the nominated person; and
  3. escorting police officers are to be asked to countersign against any notation of discrepancies on this copy.

If the police property sheet contains health and medical information about a prisoner, including details of medication prescribed, the nominated person must give a photocopy of the form containing the information to the facility's medical staff if applicable, within 30 minutes of the prisoner being received.

Details of each item of personal property in the possession of a prisoner transferred from police custody must be entered onto IOMS. The police property sheet must be used, as a basis for entering the inventory, however individual items of personal property must be sighted by the prisoner before an entry is made.

The prisoner must countersign the copy of the police property sheet and countersign any notation of a discrepancy on the sheet. The sheet must be retained on the prisoner's property file as a confirmation of receipt of the property. When all items are entered, the prisoner must indicate any item considered to have a value exceeding $500.00.

If such a value is placed on an item, the prisoner must sign the "Acknowledgment" section of administrative form - Acknowledgement of Responsibility for Property and the prisoner encouraged to hand the item to a person outside the facility. A prisoner wishing to lodge a claim in respect of a discrepancy noted must be given every assistance to do so.

7. Prisoner Property Transfer

Prior to transfer of a prisoner all personal property of a prisoner must be accounted for in the presence of the prisoner, unless exceptional circumstances exist. The Chief Executive or delegate must provide for the management and administration of a prisoner's property on transfer ensuring that packaging and documentation of the transfer of property between corrective services facilities and Queensland Police Service facilities is conducted in a manner that reduces the risk of theft, loss or damage.

The Chief Executive or delegate must provide for the securing of property of a prisoner subject to a transfer and not able to comply with this procedure.

As a minimum, the prisoner's cell or room must be secured as he/she is removed and no access allowed either by staff or prisoners until all personal property has been returned to the store, and-

  1. if a cell has been secured, two officers are to itemise and collect items of personal property from the cell;
  2. both officers are to sign the list as a true record of property located in the cell; and
  3. the store officer must acquit all property of a prisoner subject to an involuntary transfer and forward it to the place to which the prisoner has been transferred.

For Work Camps- the officer may itemise and collect items of personal property in company with a QPS officer or Community Advisory Committee member as a witness

7.1 Return of personal property upon transfer

A prisoner must return items of personal property in his/her possession to the store to be checked against the prisoner's IOMS property list to confirm they had been issued to the prisoner. The confirmed items must be entered as being received. Any property not confirmed on the IOMS property list is to be managed in accordance with section 8.5 unclaimed property.

7.2 Low security facilities

This process will only involve personal property valued at more than $100.00 that has previously been placed on the prisoner property records. Any item of personal property in the prisoner's possession that cannot be verified against the inventory must be confiscated and held separately in the store until ownership can be ascertained or until the Chief Executive or delegate determines its disposal.

Under no circumstances is a prisoner to be credited with or given personal property in circumstances where his/her ownership has not been recorded. Property must be added to the prisoner property records provided proof of ownership is demonstrated. It will only be confiscated in the absence of such proof of ownership.

7.3 Failure to produce property that has been issued

A prisoner who cannot produce an item of personal property that has been authorised to be in his/her possession must be asked where the property is. If possible, the property is to be located and returned to the store immediately.

If that cannot be done, a notation describing the circumstances must be entered on the prisoner management system and an inventory printed out. This must be signed by the prisoner as a correct record of his/her property at the time of transfer.

7.4 Packaging of property

Suitcases, cartons and other containers of a prisoner's personal property must be placed into transfer bags that are to be sealed with cable ties and labelled with the prisoner's name. Large single items such as guitars, computers and television sets need not be placed in transfer bags but must be labelled.

The number of transfer bags and details of large single items accompanying a prisoner on transfer must be recorded on IOMS by the despatching facility and administrative form - Prisoner Personal Property Inventory Transfer Record raised in duplicate.

7.5 Dispatching property

The transporting officer, including police officers, must be advised by the dispatching officer of any hazardous items contained in a prisoner's property. The transporting officer must check property packages against administrative form - Prisoner Personal Property Inventory Transfer Record and sign both copies if all is correct.

The transporting officer is responsible for the property between the time it is collected from the despatching facility until the time it is deposited and acquitted at the receiving facility.

Refer standard operating procedure - Escort of Prisoners (in-confidence)

7.6 Receiving transferred property

The officer receiving the property, after confirming that the transfer bags are sealed must sign both the original and duplicate copies of administrative form - Prisoner Personal Property Inventory Transfer Record.

Details of any broken seals or other indication that the transfer bag may have been tampered with are to be written on both copies of the property transfer receipt before they are signed. The duplicate copy must be given to the transporting officer and the original placed on the prisoner 's property file.

Transfer bags and single items are to be inspected by the prisoner to whom they belong before seals on the bags are cut. The receiving officer and prisoner are to sign the appropriate section of administrative form -Prisoner Personal Property Inventory Transfer Record to record the condition of the sealed bags and other property. All property must be checked against the entries in IOMS in the prisoner's presence. Any discrepancy must be noted on the inventory and the despatching facility notified immediately.

Following a transfer, receiving centres must follow up all items of property listed as “in transit”. Where there is a failure to locate the property in a reasonable time frame the item should be listed as “missing”. Information relating to the investigation undertaken to locate the property must be recorded.

7.7 Notification of property discrepancies

On receipt of such notification the person responsible for despatching the property must investigate the matter and report the circumstances in writing to the person who reported the discrepancy at the receiving facility. Copies of the notification and reply must be placed on the prisoner's property file.

7.8 Transport of property by Queensland Rail

In situations when QCS does not have the capacity to transport personal property of a prisoner being transferred between facilities, consideration should be given to transporting the property by Queensland Rail.

Freight costs in these circumstances are to be borne by the facility despatching the prisoner. When rail transport of property is anticipated, essential items of property to accompany a prisoner must include-

  1. toiletries;
  2. one set of clothing;
  3. underclothing; and
  4. footwear.

All other property, including single large items such as television sets, computers, etc must be packed appropriately for rail transport. Each bag or package must be labelled with the prisoner's name and destination.

Details of the number of bags and packages and the prisoner's name must be entered on the railway despatch docket. The customer copy of the docket must be placed on the prisoner's property file or forwarded to the facility of destination if the property is transported after the transfer. Facilities receiving property transported by Queensland Rail must follow sections 7.5 and 7.6 of this procedure.

The facility receiving property transported by Queensland Rail must initiate any claim for compensation against Queensland Rail for property apparently lost or damaged during the transportation process.

7.9 Transfer to police custody

If a prisoner's property must accompany his/her transfer into police custody, officers must ensure police are given a complete and accurate record of the prisoner's personal property.

Officers are to make two photocopies of the storage/issue record after the prisoner has signed the record as correct and after the record has been noted "Transferred Into Police Custody". The copies must clearly indicate all items of personal property that are to be handed to the escorting police officer.

The police officer taking custody of the prisoner must be given one copy of the record of personal property and asked to sign the second copy as a receipt for the property. This copy must be placed on the prisoner's personal property file.

7.10 Reception from police custody

The Chief Executive or delegate must ensure that officers are directed to receive all property accompanying a prisoner on transfer from police custody. Officers must, in company with the prisoner, arrange for the disposal of excess property in accordance with section 8 of this standard operating procedure.

7.11 Discharge of a prisoner

Prior to discharge, a prisoner's property must be managed according to the routines described in sections 6.1 to 6.5 of this procedure.

8. Disposal of Prisoner Property

A prisoner's property must be disposed of in a lawful and appropriate matter in compliance with the Corrective Services Act 2006, s. 318, Corrective Services Regulation 2006, s. 45; Justices Act 1886 and Public Trustee Act 1978.

The Chief Executive or delegate must provide for the control and administration of the disposal of a prisoner's property.

All disposals of a prisoner's property must be recorded in the Miscellaneous Property Register and, if ownership is known, copies of all related documentation must be placed on the prisoner's property record.

8.1 Death of an prisoner

Refer standard operating procedure - Death in Custody

Following the death in custody of a prisoner, pending authorisation by the Chief Executive or delegate, all non-perishable goods and items of property belonging to the deceased prisoner must be recorded and then removed to a secure place for disposal. A description of all perishable goods belonging to the deceased prisoner must be recorded as accurately as possible prior to their disposal.

After the investigating police or QCS investigator/s have given their approval in writing, the Chief Executive or delegate must contact the deceased prisoner's executor or administrator, as appropriate, for instructions regarding disposal of the prisoner's property. Refer CSR s. 45.

If the deceased prisoner dies intestate or if the executor or administrator cannot be determined or located, the Chief Executive or delegate must notify the Public Trustee. Refer PTA s. 29 and section 8.5 of this standard operating procedure.

8.2 Property of an escapee

Refer CSA s. 318

The property of a prisoner who has escaped is taken to have been abandoned and is forfeited to the State. The prisoner has no recourse to claim compensation in respect of any such property. Refer CSA s. 318(1)

A property list must be prepared as soon as practicable following a prisoner's escape by a minimum of two corrective services officers to ensure probity.

If an escaped prisoner is arrested and detained by police, the Chief Executive or delegate may keep property belonging to the prisoner (if not already disposed of or destroyed in accordance with CSA s. 318(2)) in a secure location, either in the prisoner's accommodation area or locked in a secure place until a property list can be prepared and until the property can be returned to the prisoner.

8.3 Escapee returned to custody

If a prisoner has been returned to a high security facility, the Chief Executive or delegate may request a property list be prepared and arrangements made for the property to be transferred to the reception facility. A duplicate list of property and the number of cartons/bags/cases should be noted on the prisoner's Offender File. The prisoner may nominate a person to collect this property by submitting a written authorisation to the Chief Executive or delegate.

All prisoner monies must be retained and sent to the reception facility following the prisoner's return to that facility (refer procedure - Prisoner Monies).

8.4 Seized property

Property may be seized only in accordance with CSA ss. 138-142.

Refer Form 25 - Receipt for Seized Property; Form 26 - Notice of Forfeit of Seized Thing; standard operating procedure - Barrier Control - Prohibited Things

8.5 Unclaimed property

Refer Part 8 of the Public Trustee Act 1978 (particularly ss. 98, 103 (2))

For unclaimed monies, refer Trust Accounts Act 1973 and procedure - Prisoner Monies

The Chief Executive or delegate must take all reasonable steps to ascertain the identity and whereabouts of the owner of unclaimed property and to deliver the property to the owner, authorised friend, relative or legal representative. Refer PTA, Part 8

If ownership of property cannot be determined, the general manager must-

  1. complete administrative form - Return of Unclaimed Property for each issuing source and return credit/debit cards, Medicare cards, bankbooks, passports and other documents direct to issuing sources as the owners of the items. A copy of any correspondence and any other related information must be placed on the prisoner's property record;
  2. complete administrative form - Unclaimed Property for Public Trustee List detailing all remaining items such as jewellery and effects; and
  3. notify the Public Trustee's Unclaimed Property Officer and submit administrative form - Unclaimed Property for Public Trustee List if, after a statutory period of three months, ownership of an item is unable to be established or the property cannot be returned to its owner or the owner's next-of-kin or agent.

The Public Trustee Unclaimed Property Officer will inspect and assess the item/s and-

  1. if of no commercial value, dispose of the item/s at the facility by dumping and sign, with the QCS Representative, the relevant section of administrative form - Unclaimed Property for Public Trustee List; and
  2. take possession of the item/s for sale and sign the relevant section of the administrative form - Unclaimed Property for Public Trustee List.

8.6 Handing out property

A prisoner may apply in writing to hand out items of property to a person outside the facility. Refer CSA s. 317

The Chief Executive or delegate must establish routines and responsibilities for securing and processing prisoner property for hand out, including following-

  1. upon receipt of the administrative form - Prisoner Property Hand Out, requiring the general manager of the facility to-

    1. identify and select the requested item to be handed out;
    2. confirm ownership by checking the individual property records;
    3. complete, separate and return the information slip to the prisoner; and
    4. forward the item/s of property and form to the visits processing centre for collection; and

  2. upon receipt of the item/s of property, requiring the visits processing officer, or supervisor in a low security facility to-

    1. obtain a signature for receipt of the item/s of property on the form and confirm the identity of the collecting person;
    2. enter details on IOMS before hand out;
    3. issue the item/s to the identified collection person;
    4. secure the form in the hand out locker for collection by the stores officer; and

  3. upon receipt of the signed form, requiring the stores officer to-

    1. amend the prisoner's property records to indicate that the property item was handed out; and
    2. file the hand out form with the prisoner's property record.

8.7 Acquisition of prisoner's property

No employee of QCS or engaged service provider is to gain financial advantage or to acquire possession of a prisoner's property either with or without the prisoner's agreement or after the property has been marked for disposal or destruction (refer Code of Conduct).

9. Compensation

A person may claim compensation for lost or damaged property in accordance with CSA s 319. The claim for compensation must be made in writing to the Chief Executive or delegate and is to describe particulars of loss or damage to property.

The Chief Executive or delegate must ensure a register is maintained for the reporting, investigation and recording of compensation property claims. All claims must be documented and processed in a timely manner. The Chief Executive or delegate must ensure that a file is maintained recording the results of each claim.

Decisions under CSA s. 319(3) must be undertaken in accordance with the relevant financial delegation. Refer Instrument of Financial and Travel Delegations (Department of Community Safety) (in-confidence)

Endorsed by:

MARK RALLINGS

Acting Deputy Commissioner, Custodial Operations

Approved by:





MARLENE MORISON
Commissioner





Version History

31/05/2012 - Version 01