French Court Says Prisoner Can't Have a PS3, but Could Use Xbox 360

The latest Xbox 360 exclusive? French prisons. An inmate recently lost his appeal to have his PlayStation 3, and the privilege of playing it, restored to him, and it seems the PS3's on-board WiFi connection is the problem. Good ol' Xbox 360, remember, didn't have that feature on the Elite or the Arcade models.

According to the translation of this complaint (as seen via NeoGAF), the unnamed prisoner ("Mr. B") had been given PS3 privileges when he was incarcerated in December 2009. A month later, he was transferred to other prisons twice, and in both cases the prisons' administrations wouldn't let him have his PS3, saying it didn't conform to their security policy.

So Mr. B appealed to the courts, and has been shot down for a second time. The Administrative Court of Appeal for Marseille ruled that the prisons at Fresnes and Arles acted within their authority to refuse to give Mr. B his console if they believe it may be used to communicate with others, presenting a security problem.

It seems Mr. B's PS3 was inspected by the prison administration and found that its on-board Wi-Fi connectivity was the problem. That WiFi access could allow Mr. B to download some kind of dashboard update that offers the means of communicating with the outside world. Why prisoners would be able to access unsecured wireless is a mystery to me, but simply having the capability on-board is enough to scuttle it.

Now the Xbox 360, which has no onboard Wi-Fi and which chiseled everyone by making you buy a wireless adapter (until the Slim models were released), is the more preferred gaming entertainment option by French prison staff. It's even specified in the appellate court's ruling.

Mr. B has one appeal left. After that, his only recourse is to break out of prison, discover a fortune in buried treasure on a Mediterranean island, then exact his merciless and cunning revenge as a mysterious newcomer to élite society.

Order of the Fifth Chamber, Administrative Court of Appeal of Marseille [Legifrance.gouv.fr, via NeoGAF and PC INpact]