The criminal prisoners were mainly used as the work force required for the many activities that the Island was used for. Some of these criminals served as gardeners and servants for the Dutch and British settlers posted to the Island. During the period of colonialism, the criminal prisoners included English and Dutch convicts sent to work on the establishment of the Cape settlement. The first criminal prisoners to be sent to the Island in 1615 where 10 English convicts who were attacked by the Khoikhoi in the Cape where they were initially placed. Their leader, John Cross managed to get them transported to the Island as a safer place. In May 1657, exiles and slaves were sent to the Island to cut and prepare white stone that was found on the Island.