Perth Prison continues to battle drone menace

© DC Thomson
A drone.

Perth Prison is continuing to ward off criminals trying to bring illegal contraband into the building using drones.

Details provided through the Freedom of Information (FoI) Act reveal there were six drone incidents at the penal facility in Perth from May last year to September this year.

Of these, four mobile phones were found in a drone recovered in the grounds of Perth Prison in September, with a separate incident later that month leading to two mobile phones being found.

The seriousness of the situation was recently highlighted by a  criminal gang being jailed in England for carrying out nearly 50 drone flights and ‘throw-overs’ at prisons across the UK, including Perth.

The crime network who smuggled drugs, mobile phones and a Freeview TV box into prisons using drones, were jailed for a total of 28 years.

The other six drone incidents at Perth Prison revealed in the latest FoI took place in May, June, August and December last year but no contents were found in these devices.

A spokesperson for the Scottish Prison Service said: “The Scottish Prison Service is aware of the potential for drones/quad-copters to be used illegally and various methods are deployed to prevent contraband from entering our establishments.

“Anyone found attempting to smuggle contraband into our prisons will be reported to the police.”

Fraser Munro, governor of Perth Prison, added: “The significant captures by prison staff of six mobile telephones from two separate drone incidents in September this year is testament to the vigilance of those staff and our security procedures.

“A recent court case from south of the border signals the potential for serious and organised crime involvement in this illegal activity. Individuals who choose to break the law by arranging for these vehicles to attempt to introduce contraband to prison run a very real risk of being captured, prosecuted and sentenced to significant prison sentences.”