Observant Corrections staff can be praised for a drug find at Wanganui Prison on Friday.
Eagle eyed Corrections staff observed one prisoner being handed an item during a visit and a subsequent search of the prisoner resulted in 20 grams of cannabis leaf and four caps of cannabis oil being found on the prisoner. It is suspected that the prisoner's visitor supplied the contraband to the prisoner.
“The demand for drugs in prison is high and unfortunately prisoners can put pressure on their friends and family to smuggle it in for them," says Wanganui Prison Manager, Tony Howe.
"It is our job to keep it out. I am very proud of the work done by our staff. "Firstly through their observations of the prisoner and their suspicions about his behaviour and secondly their action in informing search staff which resulted in today’s find. "We get on average 20-30 visitors during these sessions so staff vigilance is vital in monitoring prisoners and their visitors to ensure no contraband enters the prison,” says Mr Howe.
“These kinds of finds are a warning to other visitors who are considering bringing in contraband. In the end it really is not worth it, if you try you will be caught and you will face the full consequences of your illegal actions. Not only that, you will be banned from visiting the prison for up to 12 months,” says Mr Howe.
“Nationally, random prisoner positive drug tests are sitting at an all time low and today’s find is one of the ways we are achieving this. "Drug use in our prisons will not be tolerated. "The message is clear to both prisoners attempting to get drugs bought into them, and members of the public who try to bring them in. "We will find them, we will give them to the Police, and you will get caught.”
Notes to Editors
Prisoners are searched prior to and following their visits sessions and they must wear orange jumpsuits. These jumpsuits have a dual purpose – they make the prisoner more visible to staff and are also high-necked with rear zips and elasticised ankles and wrists to prevent items being concealed on the prisoner without obvious movements.
Nationally positive random drug tests are sitting at 10.5% and is the lowest since drug tests began in 1998. Please see http://www.corrections.govt.nz/news-and-publications/media-releases/2009-media-releases/positive-drug-tests-on-a-downer.html for more information.
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