WASHINGTON — A U.S. Army general has been tapped to lead the federal prison system, which will likely see its inmate population grow with Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ tough-on-crime policies.

Sessions announced Tuesday that General Mark S. Inch would lead the federal Bureau of Prisons. He has 35 years of military service.

Sessions says Inch was a former military policeman who was head of the Army Corrections Command, among other positions. Sessions says that experience makes Inch “uniquely qualified” to oversee the federal prison system, a role he says is “critical.”

Inch most recently served as an Army adviser on policing issues, developing programs and policies related to the Army’s police organizations.

He was also commanding general of the Combined Joint Interagency Task Force 435 in Kabul, Afghanistan, responsible for “detainee operations.”