Drugs found in jails 3 or 4 times a week

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 15 August, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 15 August, 2009, 12:00am

Illegal drugs, including heroin, have been found on average three or four times a week in Correctional Services Department institutions this year.

The latest figures showed that there were 98 seizures of illegal drugs in the institutions between January and last month. Most of the drugs were discovered in reception centres.

The seven-month figure compared with 93 seizures in all of last year.

The Correctional Services Department said it took every measure to prevent the smuggling of dangerous drugs into its correctional institutions and to eradicate the presence of the substances there.

'The department is committed to maintaining a drug-free environment for all people in its custody,' a spokeswoman said.

Swallowing packages of illegal drugs is a common tactic to smuggle drugs into the lock-ups.

Yesterday alone, guards made two seizures of heroin at two reception centres.

A 35-year-old man, on remand on a charge of drug-trafficking, confessed at the Lai Chi Kok Reception Centre on Thursday that he had swallowed some drugs.

He later excreted five tablets wrapped in plastic, believed to be heroin.

Another inmate on remand was found to have smuggled nine tablets believed to be heroin into the Tai Lam Centre for Women yesterday.

The 52-year-old woman, charged with drug trafficking, was put under observation after guards were tipped off that she might have swallowed drugs before her admission to the centre on Thursday.

She discharged the drug, wrapped in plastic sheets, yesterday afternoon.

The two cases have been reported to police.

The Correctional Services Department is investigating whether two other inmates are concealing dangerous drugs and has them under close observation.