Rapist and murderer Stephen Unwin is being held at Durham's Frankland jail, court hears

A murderer who raped and set light to his victim while she was still alive is being held at the North’s most high security prison, a court has heard.

Monday, 13th January 2020, 6:34 pm
Updated Tuesday, 14th January 2020, 11:10 am
Stephen Unwin is serving his sentence at HMP Frankland

Unwin was also convicted of her rape.

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Frankland has housed some of the country’s most notorious criminal since it opened in 1983 as the first of a new wave of so-called ‘dispersal prisons.’

Frankland is one of five dispersal prisons in the United Kingdom – jails that house Category A prisoners.

The idea, first proposed by Earl Mountbatten in 1966, was to establish a network of high security sites which would allow the authorities to 'disperse' prisoners to other units at short notice in order to reduce tension and possible escapes.

Frankland holds Category A, Category A High Risk and Category B adult male prisoners. Each of the original wings holds 108 prisoners in single cells.

Two more wings opened in 1998, holding an additional 206 prisoners. J Wing, opened in 2009, holds 120 prisoners.

The Westgate Unit opened in May 2004 and holds 86 prisoners who are deemed to need extra mental health provision.