12 Dec Local MP Calls Time on Mobile Phone Crime in Prisons
Stephen Metcalfe, Member of Parliament for South Basildon & East Thurrock, presses the Government to act on the illicit use of mobile phones in prisons.
Stephen has thrown his weight behind a proposed Bill by fellow MP Maria Caulfield to stop mobile phone signals and crack down on crime in prisons caused by the easy access to mobile phones.
The Prisons (Interference with Wireless Telegraphy) Bill will have the potential to make prisons safer places and will tackle the severe problems caused by illegal mobile phones in prison. The Bill has the support of the Prison Officers’ Association and the Prison Governors Association.
If passed, the Secretary of State for Justice will be able to authorise mobile network operators to work more independently, making use of their special technical knowledge and expertise to prevent, detect and investigate illicit mobiles.
The Ministry of Justice has already put in place measures to crackdown on mobile phones, but the problem is increasing with nearly 20,000 mobile phones and SIM cards, or 54 a day, found in prisons in England and Wales last year.
Stephen Metcalfe said “The use of mobile phones is already illegal but it is clear there is still an issue and we need to be more effective in tackling the problems caused by illicit mobile use. Illicit mobiles can be used to organise criminal activity from inside prison and are often used to co-ordinate increased levels of violence in prisons and it must stop. I want my constituents protected and for those that have been victims not to fear they may be able to be contacted or intimidated”.