False Sense of Security

By DeusExMacintosh

G4S tag false leg

Private security firm G4S has sacked two members of staff who tagged a man’s false leg allowing him to remove it and break a court-imposed curfew.

The pair were fooled by Christopher Lowcock, 29, who wrapped the prosthetic limb in a bandage when G4S set up the system at his Rochdale home. He was then able to remove the limb and break a curfew imposed for offences involving drugs, driving and a weapon.

G4S sacked the pair for committing a serious disciplinary offence, it said.

In a statement the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) said procedures “were clearly not followed in this case and G4S have taken action against the staff involved”.

“Two thousand offenders are tagged every week and incidents like this are very rare,” a spokesman added.

In fact this story from the BBC fails to mention that the last time G4S electronically tagged someone’s prosthesis was two whole years ago.

TAGGED Bret Ravenhill spent three months fighting the urge to break his curfew — after the tracking device was fitted to his FALSE LEG.

Bret, 29 — convicted of possessing cannabis — was amazed when a Group 4 security worker failed to spot his left leg was made of metal and DETACHABLE.

The forklift driver grinned yesterday: “Two friends were at my house when she came round and were killing themselves laughing. “I thought she would realise straight away — but she never bothered to turn up my trouser leg or look underneath my sock.

“I just left things as they were for a joke.”

Bret, who was given probation by a judge and barred for three months from going out at night, had his tag checked every four weeks and STILL no one realised. In between he would prop his artificial leg in a corner and wear a spare in Barnsley, South Yorks.

In case you had wondered why a firm that more usually runs private prisons was awarded so many of the contracts to administer the compulsory Work Programme for those of us being kicked off Incapacity Benefit – now you know.

G4S. Good for something?

UPDATE: It has been brought to my attention that these are also the bozos organising the ‘test run’ for the Personal Independence Payment (due to replace Disability Living Allowance in 2013 for a 20% saving)


  1. Posted August 30, 2011 at 3:32 am | Permalink

    Tagged. Not.

    (Or, do you know where your leg is tonight?)

  2. Posted August 30, 2011 at 3:42 am | Permalink

    In his defence, your honour, he was legless…

  3. kvd
    Posted August 30, 2011 at 4:31 am | Permalink

    I like the way this article is composed:

    – his left leg was made of metal and DETACHABLE
    – would prop his artificial leg in a corner and wear a spare in Barnsley, South Yorks

    Facts that needed to be poked in somewhere in the story, but don’t sit easily in the general flow. Leaves me wondering if you can get non-detachable metal legs, and what he wore when not in Barnsley?

  4. Posted August 30, 2011 at 8:17 am | Permalink

    That is so fucking evil!!!

  5. Posted August 30, 2011 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    Sorry, I found the earlier story from The Sun (hence the grammatical flourishes). The sub-editors who write the headlines in that paper are masters of their art… the writers, less so.

  6. Posted August 31, 2011 at 12:35 am | Permalink

    There is a logic to using the same mob in both domains – it’s about keeping people prisoners in their own homes.

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