An Australian prisoner found out not all Christmas presents dropped from the skies are from Santa’s Good List.
Officials at Capricornia Correctional Centre in central Queensland reported two drones flew over the prison on Christmas Day, each dropping a package within the walls.
An unidentified prisoner caught the first package only to have it confiscated moments later. After the prison went on lockdown, the second drone dropped another parcel within the prison yard.
The next day, officials rushed the inmate who caught the first package to an area hospital after he swallowed an unknown substance. He was released the next day.
Capricornia officials won’t say what he swallowed but xinhuanet reports doctors treated the prisoner for a meth overdose.
The drone pilot hasn’t been arrested but officials warn the would-be Meth Santa could face a two-year jail sentence and a fine of more than $12,000 (AUS).
Rogue delivery drone pilots are becoming the equivalent of the old-school, Shawshank-style fixers sneaking drugs, weapons and cell phones into the hands of inmates.
- In 2017, a lifer inmate in South Carolina allegedly used a drone to deliver tools he then used in a Fourth of July escape attempt.
- In 2016, the Cayman Islands Prison Service launched a drone training program to patrol prison facilities in search of would-be smugglers. Local UAV firm AirVu now provides imagery quadcopters along with intensive training to prison guards in an attempt to quell a common problem in the island’s prison system– drug smuggling.
- A drone delivered a packet of drugs to an Ohio prison in 2015 including almost a quarter-ounce of heroin, more than 2 ounces of marijuana and more than 5 ounces of tobacco.
The growing problem led the FAA to restrict drone flights over more than 60 federal prisons in October.
As reported in DroneLife recently:
“A 9 month study of reports of rogue drones over prisons, maintained by counter-drone technology firm Dedrone, provides a discouraging look at repeated incidents of drugs, smuggling, riots and other mayhem that rogue drones have caused over correctional facilities.”
Jason is a longstanding contributor to DroneLife with an avid interest in all things tech. He focuses on anti-drone technologies and the public safety sector; police, fire, and search and rescue.
Beginning his career as a journalist in 1996, Jason has since written and edited thousands of engaging news articles, blog posts, press releases and online content.
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