On 1 January 1844, the prison of Tongeren, the first cellular prison in Belgium, was first occupied to accommodate male prisoners. In the middle of the twentieth century, female prisoners were accommodated here for a while as well. The concept of individual detention was gradually but surely abandoned. As arrest house, the prison would after all sometimes accommodate over three prisoners per cell.The institution was closed on 2 April 2005. The 70 prisoners were transferred to the new prison of Hasselt and in the same year, the film ‘De Hel van Tanger’ (‘Hell in Tangier) was recorded there. In April 2006, the Gallo-Roman Museum took over its management.During two years, over 200,000 visitors got the opportunity to look ‘over the wall’ before the museum closed in November 2008. The Minister of Justice at that time, Jo Vandeurzen, had after all decided to use the infrastructure once again as a federal institution. The intention was to solve the shortage of accommodation for minor delinquents in the framework of the Law concerning youth protection. In addition, there was a need for a separate federal centre for the imprisonment of young people over whom the juvenile court had declined jurisdiction pursuant to Article 606 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. Before the occupation of the prison, it was renovated. The Closed Federal Centre in Tongeren became operational on 20 November 2009.