Prisons: Mobile Phones

Justice written question – answered on 30th March 2010.

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Photo of John Martin McDonnell John Martin McDonnell Labour, Hayes and Harlington

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what estimate he has made of the number of illicit mobile telephones in prisons in England and Wales in each of the last 12 months; how many of those telephones were found in the possession of (a) staff and (b) prisoners; and how many were found in communal areas in each such month.

Photo of Maria Eagle Maria Eagle Minister of State (Ministry of Justice) (also in Government Equalities Office), Minister of State (Government Equalities Office) (also in the Ministry of Justice)

The Government are committed to reducing the number of mobile phones in prisons. We have already strengthened the law through the Offender Management Act 2007, which made it an offence with a penalty of up to two years' imprisonment to bring a mobile phone or component into a prison. We are also taking forward legislation through the Crime and Security Bill to criminalise. the possession of devices, including mobile telephones within a prison without authorisation.

The National Offender Management Service (NOMS) does not hold centrally disaggregated information on the location or ownership of phones seized. Many phones and component parts are not attributable to individuals. Prisons in England and Wales are instructed to send mobile phones and SIM cards found to a central unit for analysis, it is from this unit's records that this answer is based The figures contained in the tables have been drawn from administrative data systems. Although care is taken when processing data, the detail collected is subject to the inaccuracies inherent in any large scale recording system. These data are not subject to audit.

The figures understate the actual number of finds, because they do not include items retained by the police for evidential purposes and phones not submitted for other reasons. It is not always appropriate to send phones to the central unit and some phones sent are not interrogated. These have not been included in these figures. NOMS is putting in place new procedures to improve the accuracy of these statistics.

Tackling mobile phones in prison presents substantial and increasing technological challenges, and while the numbers of phones found clearly indicates the scale of the challenge, it is also a reflection of prisons' increasing success in finding them and better reporting. The following table shows the number of mobile phones and SIM cards that have been received from each of the prisons over the last 12 months.

Mobile phone and SIM cards submitted to central unit (March 2009-February 2010)
Mar ch Apr il May Jun e July Aug ust Sep tember
M S M S M S M S M S M S M S
High Security
Belmarsh 1 - - - - - - - - - - 1 - -
Full Sutton - 1 - - - 2 - - - - - - - -
Frankland - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Long Lartin 1 1 - - 1 2 1 2 - 3 - - 1 1
Manchester 3 3 8 6 12 15 1 1 5 4 1 2 5 1
Wakefield - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Woodhill - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Whitemoor 2 2 - - 1 1 - 2 - - 1 1 - -
Total 7 7 8 6 14 20 2 5 5 7 2 4 6 2
London
Brixton - - 25 23 1 1 7 6 3 2 - - 2 2
Feltham 14 13 10 12 14 11 10 12 3 2 7 9 3 5
Holloway - - - - - - 3 4 - - - 1 1 1
Latchmere House - - - - 1 - 4 2 - - 1 - 2 -
Pentonville - - 1 1 17 15 17 10 10 14 15 13 10 11
Wandsworth 8 7 9 12 - - - - 21 19 - 4 - -
Wormwood Scrubs 8 7 14 9 8 12 8 6 5 6 13 11 12 15
Total 30 27 59 57 41 39 49 40 42 43 36 38 30 34
Wales
Cardiff 2 2 1 1 1 1 3 4 3 2 3 3 1 1
Swansea 1 2 3 3 - - 4 5 1 1 5 3 6 5
Usk/Prescoed - - 2 1 1 1 - - - - 1 - - -
Parc - - - - 1 3 4 4 1 - 1 1 1 2
Total 3 4 6 5 3 5 11 13 5 3 10 7 8 8
South East
Albany - - 1 1 - - - - - - - - - -
Aylesbury 1 2 2 6 1 2 2 2 12 11 - - 8 7
Blantyre House - - - - 1 - - - 3 - 2 2 - -
Bronzefield 3 4 - - - - - - 3 4 3 4 4 4
Bullingdon 4 3 2 2 4 5 4 2 - 1 1 1 1 -
Camp Hill - - - - - - 1 - - - 2 3 - -
Canterbury 1 1 - - 1 1 3 2 3 1 - - 2 1
Coldingley - - - - - - 1 - - - 1 1 3 4
Cookham Wood - - 2 2 - - - - 1 2 - - - -
Dover - - 1 1 - - - - - - 8 5 2 -
Downview 1 2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
East Sutton Park - - - - - - 1 1 - - - - - -
Elmley 3 5 5 2 6 6 4 4 - 1 1 2 4 7
Ford 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 - - - -
Grendon 1 1 18 9 - - - - - - - - - -
Haslar - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Highdown 16 14 6 2 - - - - 5 4 5 4 4 3
Huntercombe 1 2 - - 2 4 - - 1 1 2 2 - -
Kingston - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Lewes - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Maidstone 2 2 - - - - 3 4 3 3 1 3 5 6
Parkhurst 2 6 1 1 2 - 2 1 2 3 2 1 10 9
Reading 2 - - 2 1 - - 2 2 2 4 1 -
Rochester 5 6 - - - - - - - 3 - - - -
Send - - - - 1 1 - - 2 3 - - - -
Springhill - - - - 5 3 8 5 8 6 1 1 - 1
Standford Hill 1 1 2 2 16 10 8 4 14 11 6 3 6 5
Swaleside 2 3 4 4 6 7 6 10 10 9 9 8 4 5
Winchester 3 2 1 3 - - - - 1 - - - 2 1
Total 47 57 46 36 48 42 44 36 71 66 46 44 56 53
South West
Ashfield 1 2 - 1 6 6 1 1 - - 2 2 - -
Bristol - - 3 3 10 8 6 6 7 9 3 3 2 2
Channings Wood 6 6 4 4 2 7 3 3 1 2 5 5 - 6
Dartmoor 8 6 1 1 9 8 3 3 4 5 3 1 3 1
Dorchester - - 2 3 - - - - - - - - - -
Eastwood Park - - 1 2 - - - - - - 4 6 1 1
Erlestoke - - - - 1 - - - - - - - - -
Exeter - - 1 - 4 7 1 1 3 1 1 1 2 4
Gloucester 1 3 - - - - - - - - 1 1 3 3
Guys Marsh - - 5 4 9 6 9 7 19 15 26 17 18 17
Leyhill - - - - - - 1 2 6 8 10 5 - -
Portland - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Shepton Mallet 2 3 - - 1 1 3 1 - - 1 1 1 2
The Verne 3 3 1 2 5 4 3 2 3 2 - - 2 2
Total 21 23 18 20 47 47 30 26 43 42 56 42 32 38
East of England
Bedford 4 2 - - 1 1 - - - 1 - - - 1
Blundeston - 1 1 1 1 2 2 5 1 3 3 3 1 1
Bullwood Hall - - - - - - - - - - - - 1 1
Bure - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Chelmsford - - - - 2 1 2 1 3 - - - -
Edmunds Hill 3 3 1 3 1 3 2 1 2 1 5 5 4 1
Highpoint 6 3 3 3 5 5 1 1 3 6 2 4 1 3
Hollesley Bay 9 6 3 1 6 5 1 - 2 3 15 8 5 4
Littlehey 2 1 - - 1 - 1 - 1 3 - - - -
The Mount 1 7 9 7 18 22 15 12 10 14 12 13 8 7
Norwich 1 1 1 4 7 8 2 - 3 3 1 1 - -
Peterborough 13 11 1 1 4 9 6 5 6 9 10 12 13 10
Warren Hill - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Wayland 3 4 2 1 2 5 3 4 - 5 7 5 - -
Total 42 39 21 21 48 61 35 29 28 51 55 51 33 28
East Midlands
Ashwell 5 3 2 2 - - 4 4 - 2 1 2 - 1
Fosten Hall - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Gartree 1 1 - - - - - - 1 9 1 1 10 7
Glen Parva 3 4 - - - - - - - - - - 1 2
Leicester 1 1 3 2 5 4 7 6 7 10 6 5 2 3
Lincoln 1 2 4 7 2 5 1 2 4 3 1 - 3 2
Lowdham Grange - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Morton Hall 2 2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
North Sea Camp 3 6 3 - - - 3 4 4 7 3 1 1 -
Nottingham - 1 1 2 3 5 - 1 2 3 - - 3 3
Onley 2 4 - - 1 - 2 - - - 1 1 1 1
Ranby 4 4 1 - - - 4 5 3 2 - - 5 4
Rye Hill 11 9 6 8 8 7 16 24 8 20 21 16 8 5
Stocken - - 5 5 1 - 1 1 - - 2 2 1 1
Sudbury - - - - - - - 1 - - - - 1 -
Wellingborough 5 6 10 11 - 1 14 13 2 1 11 8 - 1
Whatton - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 38 43 35 37 20 22 52 61 31 57 47 36 36 30
West Midlands
Birmingham 4 6 2 - 5 7 4 1 6 6 12 8 5 9
Brinsford 1 4 1 1 3 3 2 2 8 7 6 4 1 1
Dovegate - 2 1 2 - - - - - - 2 3 - -
Drake Hall - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Featherstone 3 5 2 2 4 1 11 18 8 12 - 1 5 3
Hewell 1 2 10 10 2 7 8 10 9 14 12 12 13 6
Shrewsbury 1 - 1 - - - 1 1 - - 3 2 - -
Stafford - - - 1 - - 1 - - 2 - - 2 -
Stoke Heath 1 - 3 4 8 7 4 6 2 3 5 6 4 1
Swinfen Hall 4 2 2 1 1 1 6 5 5 4 2 4 1 1
Werrington - - - - - - 1 1 2 3 - - - -
Total 15 21 22 21 23 26 38 44 40 51 42 40 31 21
Yorkshire and Humberside
Askham Grange - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Doncaster 1 1 - - - - 1 - - - - 1 2 2
Everthorpe - - 12 11 - - 16 15 9 5 10 11 - -
Hull 7 6 3 2 7 10 2 1 4 3 1 2 - -
Leeds 10 11 3 7 4 1 7 7 2 1 2 - 5 11
Lindholme - - 3 2 5 5 14 8 17 20 11 8 11 9
Moorland open 4 2 2 5 1 - - - - 1 2 1 1 3
Moorland closed 4 3 1 3 2 2 3 3 - - 2 2 6 7
New Hall - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Northallerton - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Wealstun 6 7 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 5 - - 4 5
Wetherby - - - - - - - - - - 2 2 - -
Wolds - - 2 1 9 10 5 6 - - 6 4 15 13
Total 32 30 27 32 29 29 49 41 34 35 36 31 44 50
North West
Altcourse 11 9 21 21 18 21 12 11 16 19 11 13 10 13
Buckley Hall - - - - - - - - 3 2 - - - -
Forest Bank - - - - - - - - - - 13 15 6 9
Garth 5 6 8 12 4 3 3 2 4 4 17 19 1 3
Haverigg 6 4 5 2 - - 1 1 - - - - 1 -
Hindley - - 1 1 2 2 - - - - 1 1 - -
Kennet 7 6 - - 11 10 3 2 9 5 9 2 2 1
Kirkham - - - - - - 1 1 7 6 63 13 15 12
Lancaster Castle - - - - - - - - - - 2 3 3 2
Lancaster Farms 2 2 1 - - - 24 22 2 1 - - - -
Liverpool 6 10 43 42 25 29 29 30 7 8 3 1 9 10
Preston 10 16 6 8 - - 5 8 1 5 3 3 - -
Risley 5 8 6 7 2 2 10 15 7 9 2 4 4 2
Styal - - - - - - - - - - 2 2 - -
Thorn Cross 2 1 1 2 1 2 1 1 - - - - 2 2
Wymott - 1 18 16 11 8 8 6 10 8 5 9 10 9
Total 54 63 110 111 74 77 97 99 66 67 131 85 63 63
North East
Acklington 2 2 4 3 1 1 - - 1 - 9 7 5 6
Castington - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Deerbolt - - - - 1 3 - - - - - - - -
Durham 1 2 - - - - - - - - 3 5 3 5
Holme House 3 2 - 3 4 4 - 1 1 1 2 1 3 5
Kirklevington Grange 9 3 7 5 - 1 - 1 9 2 1 2 5 2
Low Newton - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 15 9 11 11 6 9 0 2 11 3 15 15 16 18
Grand total 262 284 363 357 353 377 407 396 376 425 476 393 355 345
Oct ober Nov ember Dec ember Jan uary Feb ruary Total
M S M S M S M S M S M S
High Security
Belmarsh - - - - - 2 - - - - 1 3
Full Sutton - - - - - 2 1 1 - 4 1 10
Frankland - - - - - - - - - - 0 0
Long Lartin 1 1 1 1 - - 1 1 - - 7 12
Manchester 1 6 - - 1 - 9 12 4 5 50 55
Wakefield - - - - - - - - - - 0 0
Woodhill - - 1 1 1 1 - - - - 2 2
Whitemoor 1 2 - - 1 2 - - 2 1 8 11
Total 3 9 2 2 3 7 11 14 6 10 69 93
London
Brixton 14 12 4 4 2 6 9 9 10 11 77 76
Feltham 8 9 3 2 3 3 4 2 2 2 81 82
Holloway - 1 - - 2 2 - - - 1 6 10
Latchmere House 2 - 2 3 5 - 1 1 3 - 21 6
Pentonville 21 18 16 14 17 19 9 5 23 18 156 138
Wandsworth 5 4 - - - - 3 1 50 60 96 107
Wormwood Scrubs 10 7 14 18 9 9 18 15 8 11 127 126
Total 60 51 39 41 38 39 44 33 96 103 564 545
Wales
Cardiff 5 3 1 1 4 6 2 3 1 - 27 27
Swansea 4 4 4 5 11 11 3 3 - - 42 42
Usk/Prescoed - 1 - - 1 1 - - - - 5 4
Parc - - 1 - 1 1 2 5 1 1 13 17
Total 9 8 6 6 17 19 7 11 2 1 87 90
South East
Albany - - - - - - - - - - 1 1
Aylesbury - - 7 6 6 6 13 14 15 14 67 70
Blantyre House - - 4 - 2 - - - - - 14 2
Bronzefield - - - - - - 2 3 - - 15 19
Bullingdon 6 3 - - 3 2 2 3 1 2 28 24
Camp Hill - - - - - - 1 1 2 2 6 6
Canterbury - - - - 1 1 2 1 1 1 14 9
Coldingley 4 5 1 - - - 1 1 2 2 13 13
Cookham Wood - - - - - - 1 1 - - 4 5
Dover 6 4 5 1 9 5 4 2 6 18 41 36
Downview - - - - - - 1 1 - - 2 3
East Sutton Park - - 1 2 - - - - - - 2 3
Elmley 2 2 1 1 4 5 1 2 - 1 31 38
Ford - - - 1 - - 1 1 - - 6 8
Grendon - - - - - - - - - - 19 10
Haslar - - - - - - - - 1 1 1 1
Highdown 2 1 - - 1 1 4 4 1 1 44 34
Huntercombe 1 1 - - - - - - - - 7 10
Kingston - - 1 - - - - - - - 1 0
Lewes - - 1 1 - - - - 1 5 2 6
Maidstone 5 9 - - 1 2 5 6 2 2 27 37
Parkhurst 4 6 - - - 2 - - 2 2 27 31
Reading - - - - 5 4 - - - - 12 13
Rochester 1 2 3 1 3 1 1 1 1 10 18
Send 1 1 1 1 - - - - 3 4 8 10
Springhill 2 1 - - 1 1 - 1 - - 25 19
Standford Hill 7 6 18 11 4 2 5 5 2 2 89 62
Swaleside 6 6 6 11 7 5 8 5 5 5 73 78
Winchester 1 1 - - - - 2 3 - 1 10 11
Total 47 47 48 38 45 39 54 55 47 64 599 577
South West
Ashfield 1 1 - - - - - - - - 11 13
Bristol 4 3 - - 1 - - - - - 36 34
Channings Wood 2 2 - - 2 3 2 1 6 14 33 53
Dartmoor 3 2 3 1 6 5 3 3 1 1 47 37
Dorchester 1 - 1 1 3 2 - - - - 7 6
Eastwood Park 1 1 - - - - - 1 - - 7 11
Erlestoke - - - - - - 1 1 4 1 6 2
Exeter 2 3 1 2 - - - - - - 15 19
Gloucester 2 1 1 - 1 1 1 1 1 11 10
Guys Marsh 3 4 9 3 11 13 8 6 14 12 131 104
Leyhill 7 8 18 15 12 11 5 4 3 4 62 57
Portland - - - - - - - - - - 0 0
Shepton Mallet - - - - - - - - - - 8 8
The Verne 2 2 3 1 1 1 1 2 3 1 27 22
Total 28 27 36 23 37 36 21 18 32 34 401 376
East of England
Bedford 2 2 - - - - - - - - 7 7
Blundeston 5 3 - - - - - 2 3 - 17 21
Bullwood Hall - - - - - - - - - - 1 1
Bure - - - - - - - - - 2 0 2
Chelmsford 1 - 1 - 2 1 3 3 1 2 12 11
Edmunds Hill - - 2 - 1 - - 1 - - 21 18
Highpoint - - 1 2 2 2 3 3 3 4 30 36
Hollesley Bay 10 11 11 4 12 8 13 11 7 2 94 63
Littlehey - - - - - - - - - - 5 6
The Mount 12 11 3 5 5 3 8 8 8 5 109 114
Norwich - - - - - - - - - - 15 17
Peterborough 7 10 3 1 9 11 8 11 4 3 84 93
Warren Hill - - - - - - - - - - 0 0
Wayland 6 6 1 3 - - 5 6 - 1 29 40
Total 43 43 22 17 31 25 40 45 26 19 424 429
East Midlands
Ashwell - - - - - - - 1 - - 12 15
Fosten Hall - - - - - - - - - - 0 0
Gartree - - - - - - 2 1 3 4 18 23
Glen Parva - - - - - - 1 1 1 1 6 8
Leicester 2 1 5 3 2 2 2 2 2 4 44 43
Lincoln 5 4 3 2 3 5 - - 1 1 28 33
Lowdham Grange - - - - - - - - - - 0 0
Morton Hall - - - - - - - - - - 2 2
North Sea Camp 5 8 3 3 3 3 2 2 6 7 36 41
Nottingham - - - - 1 1 - 6 - 1 10 23
Onley 3 - - - - - - - - - 10 6
Ranby - - - - - - - - 1 - 18 15
Rye Hill 7 8 6 10 4 3 5 5 7 17 107 132
Stocken - 2 - - 6 8 1 2 4 3 21 24
Sudbury 1 - - - - - - - - - 2 1
Wellingborough 10 15 10 6 10 11 10 13 2 1 84 87
Whatton - - - - - - - - - - 0 0
Total 33 38 27 24 29 33 23 33 27 39 398 453
West Midlands
Birmingham 11 9 10 11 6 9 16 15 10 7 91 88
Brinsford 3 5 4 1 4 2 3 3 - - 36 33
Dovegate 13 14 2 5 6 8 3 4 3 4 30 42
Drake Hall - - - - - - - - - - 0 0
Featherstone - 2 1 5 2 3 1 - - - 37 52
Hewell 12 8 10 7 1 1 6 6 4 5 88 88
Shrewsbury 1 1 1 1 - 1 - - - - 8 6
Stafford 1 1 1 1 - - 2 - - - 7 5
Stoke Heath 1 3 1 1 2 2 - - - - 31 33
Swinfen Hall 1 3 1 - - 3 1 3 - 1 24 28
Werrington - - - - - - - - - - 3 4
Total 43 46 31 32 21 29 32 31 17 17 355 379
Yorkshire and Humberside
Askham Grange - - - - - - - - - - 0 0
Doncaster - 6 1 1 2 1 1 1 - - 8 13
Everthorpe - - - - - - - - - - 47 42
Hull - - - 4 - - - - - - 24 28
Leeds 1 2 4 5 2 4 1 2 2 1 43 52
Lindholme 9 8 5 9 7 4 15 9 7 7 104 89
Moorland open 3 1 5 2 4 5 2 - 3 4 27 24
Moorland closed - - 1 1 - - 2 1 - - 21 22
New Hall - - - - - - - - - - 0 0
Northallerton 1 1 - - - - - - - - 1 1
Wealstun 1 1 3 3 1 2 - - 1 1 21 27
Wetherby 1 - - - 1 1 - - 2 2 6 5
Wolds 8 9 7 7 5 2 11 11 4 1 72 64
Total 24 28 26 32 22 19 32 24 19 16 374 367
North West
Altcourse 17 16 63 61 30 25 69 73 76 75 354 357
Buckley Hall - - - 2 2 1 - - 1 1 6 6
Forest Bank - - 3 - 3 2 5 5 17 16 47 47
Garth 5 3 4 4 2 2 5 8 4 5 62 71
Haverigg 1 1 4 2 6 5 3 1 11 40 38 56
Hindley - - - - - - - - - - 4 4
Kennet - - - 1 2 - 3 3 - - 46 30
Kirkham 17 2 51 17 21 11 30 13 55 14 260 89
Lancaster Castle - 1 - - - - - - - - 5 6
Lancaster Farms - - - - - - 4 7 1 3 34 35
Liverpool 20 17 10 8 - - 14 20 2 2 168 177
Preston - - - - 3 4 - - - - 28 44
Risley 11 11 6 9 3 2 2 4 2 4 60 77
Styal 3 3 - - - - - - 1 - 6 5
Thorn Cross 1 2 4 4 7 9 8 5 6 5 33 33
Wymott 7 10 3 1 4 3 2 2 3 3 81 76
Total 82 66 148 109 83 64 145 141 179 168 1,232 1,113
North East
Acklington 1 1 8 5 8 5 12 10 2 3 53 43
Castington 1 1 - - 1 1 1 1 - - 3 3
Deerbolt 1 - - - - - - 1 - - 2 4
Durham 1 1 - - 4 2 - - 2 2 14 17
Holme House 1 1 4 3 4 5 5 4 1 1 28 31
Kirklevington Grange 9 6 2 5 7 2 3 2 3 2 55 33
Low Newton - - - - - - - - - - 0 0
Total 14 10 14 13 24 15 21 18 8 8 155 131
Grand total 386 373 399 337 350 325 430 423 459 479 4,616 4,514

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