Andrew Coyle has had a long career in the prison service; with roles of Prison Governor at Greenock, Peterhead, Shotts and Brixton Prison from 1973-97. He was the founder of the International Centre for Prison Studies (ICPS) at the University of Essex. He has been an advisor on prison and criminal justice matters to the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and was an expert member of the Committee for the Prevention Against Torture.