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17 June, 2024
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Prisons department takes action following attempts to smuggle contraband

Meanwhile, ISOTITA union denounces baseless claims of corruption and smuggling by prison guards


The Prisons Department in Cyprus has heightened security measures following recent incidents involving the attempted smuggling of mobile phones and drugs into the prison area. The Deputy Director of the Prisons Department, Ioannis Kapnoullas, clarified the situation in a statement issued on Thursday.

On December 20, 2023, during routine vehicle checks before entering the prison area, guards discovered a small bundle hidden under the chassis of a truck. After further investigation by the police, three mobile phones and chargers were found, prompting ongoing inquiries to trace their origin.

Additionally, reports of attempts to smuggle mobile phones or drugs inside footballs and drop them into wards were addressed. The Prison Department confirmed that this method was identified by Bailiffs, and it was determined that the attempted importation originated from an area outside the department's control.

The Prisons Department has implemented additional security measures to prevent similar incidents. All confiscated items have been handed over to the police for further investigation, and the department emphasizes its commitment to thorough systematic checks.

Prison guards defend integrity amid accusations

Meanwhile, the Clerical Council of Prison Guards of the Pancyprian Guild ISOTITA has vehemently rejected accusations made by a prisoner regarding the conditions and integrity of prison guards. The prisoner alleged that guards were corrupt and indifferent to the well-being of detainees, accusing them of smuggling illegal items such as mobile phones, SIM cards, and drugs into the prison.

In response, the ISOTITA Guild issued a statement characterizing these accusations as "baseless and slanderous." The Guild emphasized the challenging nature of the guards' tasks under adverse conditions, emphasizing their dedication to ensuring the safety of prisoners and the efficient functioning of the prison system.

The Guild expressed opposition "to all forms of corruption" and clarified that any guard found guilty of corruption-related offenses, upon conviction by a court of law, would face immediate expulsion. It urged against unfairly targeting all prison guards for the actions of a small minority, affirming their commitment to maintaining the highest standards of integrity in their duties.

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