28 Jul 2010

Mt Eden bidder under investigation in Australia

3:23 pm on 28 July 2010

One of the companies bidding to run Auckland's Mt Eden prison has been at the centre of a parliamentary inquiry in Australia this week.

G4S is under scrutiny for the death of an Aboriginal elder, who endured searing temperatures in the back of one of its prison vans in the Outback.

The victim suffered third-degree burns and heatstroke when the van's air-conditioning broke down during the four-hour journey across Western Australia's Goldfields in 2008.

G4S is among those the coroner had earlier blamed for the man's subsequent death in hospital.

The state's Department of Corrective Services commissioner says G4S has been unable to provide practical training to workers in remote areas.

But G4S disputes this, saying the company will soon have completed training for 10 of its supervisors who work in regional Australia.

New Zealand's Minister of Corrections Judith Collins says she cannot comment on the G4S bid to run Mt Eden prison because the tender process is still under way.