Minister for Corrections Mark Ryan.
Minister for Corrections Mark Ryan.

Scandal-riddled Townsville prison investigation underway

INVESTIGATIONS are under way into a "variety" of matters at the Townsville prison following an alleged sex scandal and a raft of other issues at the complex.

The prison has been rocked by a series of scandals including an investigation into an alleged sex tryst, staff ­protesting amid safety and wage concerns, allegations of overcrowding and attacks on both staff and inmates.


Minister for Corrections Mark Ryan refused to comment on the specifics of the allegations yesterday but confirmed several inquiries were being made.

"There are investigations under way. There has not been a conclusion around whether those allegations are substantiated," he said.

"The Commissioner (for Queensland Corrective Services) assures me that those investigations are under way, and I trust him.

"I can't comment about specific allegations or investigations because they've got to be allowed to run their course."

He said some of the current investigations were public while "some were not".

Mr Ryan said he had faith in the investigation system and it was not for ministers to intervene in specific individual matters every single time.

"That's not the role of ministers and in fact, it would be inappropriate for anyone to intervene in those matters," he said.

"The proper course has to run. The Ethical Standards Unit needs to investigate.

"It would be premature for anyone to jump ahead just on the basis of allegations that still need to be investigated."

Burdekin MP Dale Last has previously said the ­community needed confidence that the investigation was being conducted in an "open and transparent manner".

The Bulletin has previously ­revealed a letter that labelled the prison as a "toxic and vile" workplace had been forwarded to the CCC.

The complaint has been reviewed and referred back to Queensland Corrective Services to deal with.

A Queensland Corrective Services official has said there were culture issues at the ­prison, claiming management was working to address this and accusing disgruntled staff of having an agenda.