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Decision Report 201706971

  • Case ref:
  • Date:
    June 2019
  • Body:
    Scottish Prison Service
  • Sector:
    Scottish Government and Devolved Administration
  • Outcome:
    Upheld, recommendations
  • Subject:
    personal property


Mr C complained that the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) did not reasonably investigate and respond to his report of lost property. Mr C's property went missing and the SPS acknowledged that the door to his cell was left open accidentally by one of their officers.

We found that the SPS had carried out investigations into what happened to Mr C's property and offered compensation. However, we noted that there were gaps in the investigation and the offers of compensation did not clearly state what they were for, or why some items were not being compensated. Therefore, we upheld Mr C's complaint.


What we asked the organisation to do in this case:

  • Apologise to Mr C for failing to carry out a robust investigation into his report of lost property. The apology should meet the standards set out in the SPSO guidelines on apology available at www.spso.org.uk/leaflets-and-guidance.
  • Reconsider Mr C's compensation claim, taking into account the failings identified.

What we said should change to put things right in future:

  • Reflect on the findings of this decision and share this with the relevant staff. The SPS should ensure investigations are robust and reasoning for compensation claims are clear.

Updated: June 19, 2019