A visitor attempting to bring contraband into Spring Hill Corrections Facility on Saturday was disrupted by detector dog Kato.
During a routine search of visitors entering the site, Kato became suspicious of a particular individual.
Staff took the visitor to a private area for questioning, where the visitor admitted to carrying a quantity of a white powder and what appeared to be cannabis.
The matter has been referred to Police for further investigation and consideration of charges. The visitor has also been issued a 12-month ban from visiting the prison.
“This was great work by Kato and the rest of the team,” says Prison Director Scott Walker. “Together they successfully stopped the drugs from getting into the prison and to the prisoner they were intended for.
“Drugs can create a more dangerous working environment for our staff, and prevent prisoners from engaging in rehabilitation, education and employment opportunities.
Managing the introduction of contraband into prisons is a constant challenge. We continue to be vigilant in our searches and our general screening of visitors, contractors, and staff. A range of methods are used at prisons across New Zealand to prevent drugs, weapons, cellphones and other prohibited items from entering. They include 24 detector dog teams operating across the country, x-ray technology, telephone monitoring of prisoners’ calls and single points of entry to sites.
“The demand for drugs in prison is high and unfortunately prisoners put a lot of pressure on their friends and family to smuggle it in for them. It is our job to keep it out.
“Every single person entering the prison goes through the same security process and we will not hesitate in taking action against people thinking that they will get away with it.”