Prisons: Mobile Phones

Justice written question – answered on 5th May 2009.

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Photo of Edward Garnier Edward Garnier Shadow Minister (Justice)

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many mobile telephones were seized in each prison in England and Wales in the last five years for which figures are available.

Photo of David Hanson David Hanson The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice

Prisons are asked to send mobile phones and SIM cards they find to a central unit for analysis. The numbers analysed are set out in the following table for each of the last three years. There are no figures available for the years prior to 2006, because this information was not collated centrally.

The figures include items discovered within the prison perimeter and on entry to establishments. However, we believe that these figures may understate the actual number of finds, because they do not include items retained by the police for evidential purposes, and because in some instances prisons have not sent items for analysis. NOMS is putting in place new procedures to ensure that we have a more comprehensive picture in future. While the numbers of phones found indicates the scale of the challenge in tackling illicit mobile phones, it is also a reflection of prisons' increasing success in finding them and better reporting.

NOMS is implementing a strategy to minimise the number of phones entering prisons, and to find or disrupt those that do enter. As part of the strategy, prisons are being provided with technologies to strengthen local security and searching strategies, in line with the recommendations in the Blakey report, Disrupting the Supply of Illicit Drugs into Prisons, published in July 2008. This includes the roll out of "BOSS" chairs to all prisons, and the deployment of other detection and disruption technologies, including mobile phone signal blockers.

We have also strengthened the law, through the Offender Management Act 2007 (implemented in April 2008), which makes it a criminal offence with a punishment of up to two years' imprisonment to bring an unauthorised mobile phone or component part into a prison.

Mobile phones/SIM cards
Establishment 2006 2007 2008
Acklington C 0 0 18
Albany B 0 0 2
Altcourse Local 0 0 190
Ashfield Juvenile/YOI/Remand 0 0 0
Ashwell C 9 3 48
Askham Grange Female open 0 0 0
Aylesbury YOI 17 22 146
Bedford Local 31 23 8
Belmarsh A/Local 94 65 75
Birmingham Local 26 17 307
Blakenhurst (became part of Hewell in 2008) Local 27 100
Blantyre House C 1 2 4
Blundeston C 52 47 71
Brinsford Juvenile/YOI/Remand 11 32 90
Bristol Local 28 46 35
Brixton B/Local 0 83 425
Brockhill (became part of Hewell in 2008) C 2 7
Bronzefield Female 0 0 12
Buckley Hall C 9 41 61
Bullingdon Local/Remand 27 25 54
Bullwood Hall C 3 0 9
Camp Hill C 0 10 27
Canterbury C 20 10 19
Cardiff Local 14 29 42
Castington Juvenile/YOI/Remand 0 1 3
Channings Wood C 2 58 121
Chelmsford B 20 5 37
Coldingley C 9 17 22
Cookham Wood Juvenile (re-roled from female prison during 2907-08) 0 12 0
Dartmoor B 19 40 81
Deerbolt YOI 0 6 24
Doncaster Local 15 93 10
Dorchester Local 30 9 14
Dovegate B 49 33 35
Downview Female 2 9 11
Drake Hall Female 3 0 6
Durham Local 7 22 18
East Sutton Park Female open 0 9 11
Eastwood Park Female 3 7 10
Edmunds Hill C 2 60 41
Elmley Local 23 33 103
Erlestoke C 37 74 47
Everthorpe C 11 1 127
Exeter Local 10 16 79
Featherstone C 14 14 40
Feltham YOI/Remand 0 0 95
Ford D 26 25 22
Forest Bank Local 57 65 5
Foston Hall Female 0 0 0
Frankland A 8 29 41
Full Sutton A 33 22 42
Garth B 54 24 87
Gartree Lifer 10 25 32
Glen Parva YOI/Remand 4 28 56
Gloucester Local 5 33 26
Grendon/Spring Hill B/D 70 42 56
Guys Marsh C (also held young offenders until 2008) 56 15 9
Haverigg C 26 26 18
Hewell Local/C/D 387
Hewell Grange (became part of Hewell in 2008) D 5 56
High Down Local/ Remand 14 9 177
Highpoint C 81 231 339
Hindley YOI/Juvenile/Remand 1 34 163
Hollesley Bay D/YOI 4 79 116
Holloway Female 0 0 16
Holme House Local 3 22 53
Hull Local 19 66 22
Huntercombe Juvenile/YOI 0 1 16
Kennet C (opened from mid-2007) 0 6 43
Kingston/Portsmouth Lifer 12 9 9
Kirkham D 12 122 12
Kirklevington C 6 24 78
Lancaster Castle C 16 5 0
Lancaster Farms YOI/Remand 0 18 20
Latchmere House C 0 0 30
Leeds Local 52 48 84
Leicester Local 12 38 65
Lewes Local 45 40 2
Leyhill D 12 43 30
Lincoln Local 30 29 56
Lindholme C 7 12 17
Littlehey C 4 11 17
Liverpool Local 56 59 118
Long Lartin A 71 96 66
Lowdham Grange B 1 2 32
Low Newton Female 1 4 3
Maidstone C 32 25 72
Manchester A/Local 62 75 112
Moorland Closed C 17 19 86
Moorland Open C/D/YOI 0 28 9
Morton Hall Female 14 1 11
The Mount C 87 47 23
New Hall Female 4 1 1
Northallerton YOI 1 13 6
North Sea Camp D 48 58 96
Norwich Local/YOI/D 11 35 70
Nottingham Local 21 48 40
Onley C/YOI 6 23 24
Pare Local/YOI 6 19 66
Parkhurst B 38 24 21
Pentonville Local 0 195 80
Peterborough Local/Female 41 124 133
Portland YOI 0 0 0
Preston Local 0 32 181
Ranby C 21 4 127
Reading YOI/Remand 0 41 16
Risley C 14 45 70
Rochester YOI 2 6 13
Rye Hill B 0 4 56
Send Female 0 4 7
Shepton Mallet Lifer 0 2 10
Shrewsbury Local 7 0 10
Stafford C 16 21 55
Standford Hill D 15 28 9
Stocken C 22 7 30
Stoke Heath YOI/Remand 10 3 86
Styal Female 8 6 13
Sudbury D 11 1 38
Swaleside B 32 123 145
Swansea Local 4 3 43
Swinfen Hall C/YOI 30 31 39
Thorn Cross YOI 20 2 9
Usk/Prescoed C/D 0 2 22
The Verne C 3 9 87
Wakefield A 2 2 4
Wandsworth Local 0 31 398
Warren Hill D/YOI/Juvenile 0 0 0
Wayland C 23 51 27

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