Multiple cases of coronavirus have been confirmed inside Belmarsh Prison, and one inmate has died after contracting the virus.

The PA News Agency understands that as of 5pm on Sunday, April 5, 107 prisoners had tested positive for Covid-19 in 38 UK jails, and nine prisoners with the virus have now died.

Many are worried that prisons could already be a breeding ground for the coronavirus, and the Government announced on Saturday that up to 4,000 low-risk prisoners will be temporarily released for jail in an effort to try and control the spread.

The nine deaths are made up of three inmates at HMP Littlehey in Cambridgeshire, a female prisoner at Low Newton, County Durham, and one inmate each at Birmingham, Manchester, Altcourse, Whatton, and Belmarsh in south east London.

Some 19 prison staff in 12 jails have contracted the virus as well as four prison escort and custody service staff.

Belmarsh Prison is a maximum-security jail housing 797 prisoners, including high-profile inmate Julian Assange as well as murderers, rapists, terrorists and more.

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The news comes as MPs are set to grill Justice Secretary Robert Buckland about how the justice system is coping during the coronavirus outbreak.

Campaigners have hit out at the decision to hold Tuesday's Commons Justice Committee hearing in private, prompting fears ministers could be escaping public scrutiny.

The committee said it could not take place in public or through a publicly available broadcast as normal "owing to current restrictions on parliamentary capacity, partly caused by the virus".

Instead there will be live tweets posted on social media during the course of proceedings with a press release and a note "summarising the hearing" published afterwards, rather than a full transcript or recording being made available.

Committee chairman Bob Neill said in a statement that he "shares concerns" about the meeting being less open than would usually be the case but the House of Commons does not have capacity to record and broadcast the meeting, which the committee finds "as frustrating as anyone".

More than half of criminal and civil court buildings have been closed in a bid to prevent the spread of the virus, with only urgent hearings taking place, while prosecutors were issued guidance on how to prioritise cases.