Pubdate: Sat, 18 Dec 2010
Source: Nation, The (Thailand)
Copyright: 2010 Nation Multimedia Group


In an attempt to tackle the long-standing problem of drug dealings
being run by convicted dealers, Ratchaburi's Khao Bin prison will be
the first to get mobile phone jamming devices.

Costing Bt50 million, the devices will be installed at eight locations
on the premises to block phone calls between convicts and drug
dealers. Even though the devices also disrupt the signals for prison
officials and residents living nearby, no formal complaints have been
received yet.

Next year, the devices will be installed in Bangkok's Khlong Prem
prison as well as the Central Correctional Institution for Drug
Addicts in the same compound, Nonthaburi's Bang Khwang and Nakhon
Ratchasima's Khlong Phai prisons, director-general of the Corrections
Department, Chartchai Sutthiklom, said yesterday.

He said corrupt prison guards sold mobile phones to inmates for
between Bt120,000 and Bt150,000 each, as well as SIM cards for
exorbitant amounts.

Meanwhile, Democrat MP Pramual Aim-pia, as a member of the House
subcommittee in charge of the issue, has proposed that all drug
convicts be detained in one prison, where cellphone signals are
blocked and only relatives are allowed to visit.

He said it was likely that the Justice Ministry would agree to build a
new prison in Nakhon Ratchasima over the next three years for this

Separately, border police arrested six men, including a minor, who are
allegedly part of a gang selling amphetamines to inmates at a prison
in Nakhon Si Thammarat. Four of the suspects had recently been
released from prison.

Police also seized "ice" flakes and amphetamine tablets, with a street
value of more than Bt400,000, as well as two handguns. 
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