Specialist officers from Corrective Services NSW and local staff conducted a dawn raid at Parklea Correctional Centre today in search of contraband. Twenty-four officers and K-9s from the Security Operations Group took part in the operation.
This followed an intelligence-based investigation that led to the seizing yesterday morning of a mobile phone that had been used to access Instagram. The inmate who owned the phone has been moved to Supermax.
"Mobile phones are a challenge for prison systems across the world," said Assistant Commissioner (Security & Intelligence) Mark Wilson. "Corrective Services NSW takes a zero tolerance approach to any inmate found with a phone."
CSNSW is investigating some of the claims made on Instagram including allegations about the smuggling of contraband into the prison, which is operated by the GEO Group.
CSNSW has been conducting a security crackdown on mobile phones in all prisons, with increased searches and the recent announcement that full body scanners will be introduced into all maximum and medium security prisons by the end of this year.
In addition to the penalty of up to two years extra prison for possessing a mobile phone, further sanctions were introduced last month. Inmates found with a mobile phone will be immediately dismissed from employment and regressed to maximum security.
CSNSW recently announced mobile phone jamming at Lithgow Correctional Centre will be extended for another three years. It will be expanded next year to include another prison for a period of two years – possibly at Goulburn Correctional Centre. CSNSW believes effective jamming technology is the ultimate answer to illegal mobile phone use in prisons.