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Disgraced Archer back in closed jail; Visit to party broke home leave rules.

Byline: Paul Sims

DISGRACED Tory peer Lord Archer, 62, was yesterday moved to a closed prison after breaching the terms of his home leave by attending a party hosted by a former Conservative colleague.

The ex-Tory Party deputy chairman was switched from North Sea Camp open prison to Lincoln jail for breaking the terms of his licence, a Prison Service spokeswoman said.

``There has been a serious breach of trust,'' she said. ``We are also concerned about some aspects of his alleged activities whilst on temporary release in Lincoln.

``Lord Archer has admitted attending the party. Whilst we consider his future location he has been relocated to Lincoln Prison.''

A Prison Service investigation is currently underway after Lord Archer, who is serving four years for perjury, and his wife, Mary, went to the home of former education secretary Gillian Shephard without informing jail authorities.

The conditions of Lord Archer's licence which allowed him to work at the Theatre Royal in Lincoln and have home visits have been suspended, the spokeswoman added.

Lady Archer said yesterday her husband had not been drinking at the party and that he had been punctilious in his observance of the rules governing home visits.

She said: ``It was a small lunch party at the home of long-standing friends. We were told, and I am sure this is Jeffrey's understanding, that he was allowed home and within a 55-mile radius of North Sea Camp which certainly includes Gillian Shephard's home.

``Home leave doesn't mean staying only at home. Prisoners are free to go out for picnics, or lunch or shopping or whatever.''

In a statement South West Norfolk MP Mrs Shephard, said: ``We gave a small party for friends at our home in Norfolk 10 days ago. Mary and Jeffrey Archer were invited. When they accepted, I naturally assumed that the terms of Jeffrey's conditions to leave from prison permitted him to attend the event.

``If they did not, that is a matter for Jeffrey and the Prison Service to sort out.''

Opinion - Page 6

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RULEBREAKER: Lord Archer, pictured on a recent day release, has been transferred to a closed prison
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Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Sep 27, 2002
Words:357
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