Prison staff given 'magic' wands to track down illegal mobile phones under £25million plan

HI-TECH detectors will be deployed in prisons to thwart the flow of illegal mobile phones under new government plans.

Front-line staff will be given the ‘magic wands’ that will be able to track down up-to-date hidden 5G devices.

Ministers are set to spend £25 million on the upgraded equipment to find the modern handsets tucked away in cells.

The investment will also be used to bring in new machines to detect microscopic smears of illegal substances such as drugs on prisoners’ mail.

It comes after figures revealed body scanners foiled a staggering 20,000 plots to smuggle drugs, phones and lethal weapons into jails.

The moves make it easier for prison bosses to clampdown on organised crime gangs continuing their operations inside prisons.

Witness and victim intimidation are often carried out by those who have access to phones in prison.

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Justice Secretary Dominic Raab last week said that illicit contraband “endangers our hardworking staff” and holds back other prisoners who are serious about rehabilitation.

A government source said: “Kitting out prisons with the latest in technology to keep drugs and phones out of jail will protect hard-working staff and ensure prisoners spend their time getting back on the straight and narrow.

“It will cut crime and make our streets safer.”

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