Drug Rats – Deceased rodents have been used to smuggle contraband into a British prison.
Staff members at HMP Guys Marsh in Dorset found three dead rodents that had been stitched up via their stomachs, with an investigation revealing five mobile phones and chargers, three sim cards and drugs, including cannabis and spice, found inside.
The Prison Service say this is the first recorded incident of its kind and that the contraband was intended to be collected from the grounds by inmates inside Guys Marsh. Prisons Minister Rory Stewart said this of the incident:
“This find shows the extraordinary lengths to which criminals will go to smuggle drugs into prison, and underlines why our work to improve security is so important. Drugs and mobile phones behind bars put prisoners, prison officers and the public at risk.
“By toughening security and searching, we can ensure prisons are places of rehabilitation that will prevent further reoffending and keep the public safe.”
These drug rats found in Dorset are indicative of a rise in contraband being smuggled into UK prisons. The Guardian report that “in the 12 months to March 2018, there were 13,119 incidents where drugs were found in prisons in England and Wales – a rise of 23% on the previous year. The prevalence of mobile phones has also increased – up by 15% to 10,643 instances in 2017-18.”
Tennis balls and pigeons have previously been used to try to smuggle contraband over prison fences. Once prohibited items find a route into the prison, officials say inmates are “adopting increasingly inventive tactics to keep them hidden, such as by secreting them in hollowed out furniture or in electrical items”, according to the Evening Standard.
A host of measures are being deployed as part of a multimillion pound drive to boost prison security, including scanning equipment to detect drugs on people or in mail, phone-blocking technology and improved searching techniques.
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