Govt under fire over prison ‘mother ship’ plan

The Federal Opposition has condemned a Government plan to hold illegal fisherman and asylum seekers intercepted in Australia waters for up to a month on a prison ship.

Customs is searching for a vessel that can be converted to hold up 30 detainees and be armed with mounted machine guns.

The ship will cost up to $10 million a year to lease.

The move is part of the Government’s bid to strengthen Australia’s border protection.