For the first time, prisons beyond the high-security estate will use new, improved machines to check baggage brought in by the thousands of staff and visitors who enter and exit prisons daily.

To date, these machines have stopped huge hauls of illegal contraband from getting into prisons, with recent finds including:

99 sheets of ‘spice’ paper, worth almost £60,000 inside prisons, in a cardboard box with a false bottom
nearly £40,000 worth of cannabis and tobacco concealed in curry and beef stew tins, and
a bottle of washing-up liquid that tested positive for heroin
The most challenging 44 prisons will be the first to benefit from the machines – developed by VMI Security – which offer high-quality, sharp images to detect drugs, phones and high-density materials.

The latest development follows the success of 75 X-ray body scanners, across 74 male prisons, which have disrupted around 20,000 attempts to smuggle harmful items into prisons in 2 years.

Last year, dozens of prisons were also kitted out with new drug-trace machines that detect tiny smears of new psychoactive substances such as ‘spice’ on mail and items of clothing – stopping dangerous drugs from getting onto wings.

The smuggling of items into prison almost always carries a sentence of immediate imprisonment, no matter the offender’s personal circumstances.

In every case, we will carefully consider what defences might be available to an individual facing investigation or prosecution. Where a guilty plea is appropriate, we work hard to present the sentencing court with a comprehensive mitigation package to minimise the resulting penalty.

If you are facing investigation or prosecution for alleged smuggling or any other offence, do not delay getting in touch with us.


How can we help?

We ensure we keep up to date with any changes in legislation and case law so that we are always best placed to advise you properly. If you would like to discuss any aspect of your case, please contact our team of criminal defence specialists on: 01376 511819