Officials pleased with results of unannounced raid

According to Mesia Hlungwane, DCS spokesman, the raid was conducted by their emergency support team.
He said the routine search operations were conducted to counter offenders’ smuggling contraband into the correctional facilities.

“Smuggling is an assisted process, and people are urged to play their part by not helping offenders to perpetuate further crimes through smuggling. The department acknowledges there are some rotten apples that have to be rooted out of the department, who are helping offenders smuggle contraband,” said Hlungwane.

He further warned the public that the smuggling of contraband to correctional centres was a punishable offense and those involved can face criminal charges and end up being convicted.

The Medium-B centre houses 965 offenders, many of whom are serving life sentences.
Other contraband that was seized during the raid include 15 cellphone chargers, 15 earphones, 13 SIM cards, seven sharp objects, two bank cards and dagga.

Meanwhile, the area commissioner for the Barberton DCS Facilities, Solly Netshivhazwaulu was pleased with the commitment of officials in cleaning up the cells.

“It is the responsibility of correctional services to ensure that South Africans are safe. Allowing contraband into our centres threatens the freedom of good citizens, therefore we will work tirelessly until our centres becomes clean,” said Netshivhazwaulu.

Read: Prison farm’s water woes finally solved

He said the department has instituted an internal investigation to establish whether cellphones were used in criminal activities.
“If findings indicate that they were used for criminal activities, they will be taken to the SAPS for further handling and prosecution.

“The phones were disposed and the cash confiscated will be deposited to the revenue account of the National Treasury.

“All offenders found in possession of contraband will be disciplined accordingly and further be reclassified to the maximums,” added Netshivhazwaulu.

Richard Nkosi

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