9/17/2009 12:00:00 PM
Prisoners’ use of smuggled mobile phones soars by 300%
The use of illicit mobile phones in prisons has risen more than 300% over the past three years, according to Government figures released last week.
Prisons minister David Hanson said more than 4,000 mobile phones and 4,352 Sim cards were seized from prisons between March 2008 and March 2009. Since 2006, the number of contraband phones seized has soared to 8,484 from 2,068.
While most of the phones are used by prisoners to keep in touch with family, some are used to plan crimes and intimidate witnesses.
Smuggled phones can retail at up to £800 behind bars. There is also a spin-off business in making mobile phone chargers from parts taken from prisoners’ PlayStations.
Last month, convicted drug dealer George Moon was jailed for a further 18 years after using a mobile phone to run an international cocaine ring from his cell at Lindholme prison in Doncaster.