The Court Security and Custodial Services Act 1999 defines a court custody centre as the part of the court’s premises where people in custody are detained. Sentenced prisoners, people remanded in custody, or those arrested and charged with a crime are held in court custody centres before appearing in court. Depending on the outcome of the court appearance, they may be released to freedom, or transferred to a prison or a police lock-up.
The court custody centres are managed by private contractors, who also subcontract out some of their services. The majority of these are managed by Broadspectrum, who subcontract the security services to Wilson Security. The District Court and Central Law Courts in Perth are managed by the Western Liberty Group Consortium, with some services subcontracted to G4S Custodial Services.
Some regional courts do not have a dedicated court custody centre. Here, persons in custody are held at the local police lock-up and handed over to the custody of the contractor for the duration of their court appearance. And at three regional courts, the police lock-ups have been prescribed as custody centres to be managed by the contractor during court sitting hours, reverting back to police management once court has finished for the day.
We inspected all of these facilities between March and June 2018. The inspection team engaged the services of a contract management expert to assist in deciphering the various contracts with the service providers and how these are managed.