A DAVYHULME woman freed from prison on licence is back behind bars after her children’s pet rabbit chewed through electrical cable powering her tag’s monitoring equipment.
Mum-of-two Claire Tong, 32, was released two weeks ago from York's Askham Grange prison having served three months for money laundering.
She was tagged to ensure she complied with a nightime curfew, banning her from leaving the family home in Kingsway Park.
But last Wednesday evening disaster struck when the family’s pet rabbit, Cuddles, chewed through power cables of a receiver unit located in the house.
Devastated husband, Dave, said they promptly contacted G4S (formerly Group 4 Security) who monitor the system, and an engineer sent the next day seemingly accepted the couple's explanation and
replaced the unit.
But on Sunday cops swooped and arrested Claire, saying she’d breached her licence conditions, claiming the wire had been cut with a blade.
She's now in Styal Prison awaiting a decision by magistrates.
"She rang them straight away and explained the situation," explained Dave. "When the engineer came the next day she said it was fine and could see what had happened and where the cable had been
"But then the police turned up on Sunday and said they were having to recall her to prison as they believed the unit had been tampered with. Claire thought they were joking at first, but we aren't
laughing now," he fumed.
Claire spent the night in Stretford Police Station Cells and has since been transferred to Styal Prison in Cheshire.
To make matters worse, according to Dave, Claire was due to resume her job at a Stockport solicitors on Monday, who'd held her post held open, but unemployed Dave said her job was under threat
because of recent developments.
A spokesman for G4S said they were unable to comment on specific cases, but said bosses assess such matters on a case by case basis, and after investigating would make a recommendation to the
Ministry of Justice who'd have the final say. It's now up to Claire to appeal the decision.
The family have also contacted Stretford and Urmston MP Bev Hughes who said today (Tuesday) she was looking into the matter.