By David Madden

GLOUCESTER COUNTY, NJ (CBS) – Public defenders in Gloucester County are running out of time, and options, in their quest to halt the scheduled shutdown of the county jail and the transfer of some 250 male inmates.

A three member appeals panel acted last night, issuing a one page order without explanation.

Dale Jones, Assistant State Public Defender says, “The courts are not going to order the Gloucester County Board of Freeholders to cease and desist from shutting the jails down immediately.”

Public Defenders could decide, as soon as today, on whether to seek a restraining order from the state Supreme Court. Freeholders plan to begin transferring inmates come Monday to jails in Cumberland, Salem, Burlington and Essex Counties, with hopes to complete the process by month’s end. Prisoners will be transported to Woodbury for hearings and meetings with lawyers.

A suit that questions the legal effect of the shutdown is scheduled to be heard this summer.

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