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Issued: Monday, 19 October 2015
Visitors to NSW Correctional Centres have been put on notice after two people were caught during a contraband blitz at Wellington Correctional Centre.
Yesterday’s operation by specialist Security Operations Group officers and K9 sniffer dogs resulted in two men being charged with bringing drugs into the prison.
A 41-year-old man was allegedly found with eight balloons containing more than 13 grams of tobacco, cigarette papers, and five tablets.
A 34-year-old man was allegedly found with seven balloons containing 28 tablets of prescription drugs.
The pair’s vehicle was searched and officers allegedly discovered a further 107 tablets including oxycontin, endone and valium. The vehicle also allegedly contained more than 13 grams of green vegetable matter, a mobile phone and sim card, five cans of bourbon, and a bottle of vodka.
Police were called and the pair was arrested and charged.
Corrective Services NSW Commissioner Peter Severin said the operation demonstrated how visitors risk criminal charges by trying to smuggle banned goods to inmates.
"Any contraband that enters the prison environment – including illegal and prescription drugs – presents a major risk to the health, safety and security of inmates," Commissioner Severin said.
"This operation shows visitors trying to bring in contraband will be caught and face criminal charges as well as being refused entry."
Minister for Corrections David Elliott said Corrective Services NSW will continue to show no tolerance for contraband.
"We have never been more serious about preventing contraband from entering prisons, and visitors can be guaranteed specialist search teams are a regular presence through rolling operations at centres around the state," Mr Elliott said.
"In 2014, Security Operations Group officers and K9 teams conducted more than 103,000 visitor searches at correctional facilities across NSW, resulting in 160 visitors being charged and 574 being denied entry.
"I thank the officers who made the discovery for their vigilance and keeping this contraband out."
Commissioner Severin said, "Visitors caught bringing contraband into prisons face penalties of up to two years' imprisonment. Another penalty is a ban on visits of up to two years."