Are you OK with cookies?

We use small files called ‘cookies’ on Some are essential to make the site work, some help us to understand how we can improve your experience, and some are set by third parties. You can choose to turn off the non-essential cookies. Which cookies are you happy for us to use?

Skip to content

New more sensitive bag- scanners to be introduced at Prison gates

Cutting edge ‘bag scanners’ are the latest equipment  to be installed at prison gates, designed to tackle contraband entering prisons across England and Wales.

The Deputy Prime Minister, Dominic Raab, recently announced that 83 ‘bag scanners’ will be installed at prisons by the end of March 2023.

The scanners will specifically target baggage brought into our prisoners by not only visitors, but staff too.

The scanners will produce high-quality, sharp images detecting drugs, mobile phones and other high-density items.

The scanners will supplement, not supplant, the already successful body scanners, drug-trace machines and metal detectors.  

Last year, select prisons were equipped with advanced drug-tracing machines used to detect microscopic smears of psychoactive substances, in particular ‘spice’, on mailed items and clothing.

Previously, in July 2020, advanced X-ray scanners were introduced to tackle contraband finding its way into prisons.

Two and a half years later, the scanners are proving a success, preventing mobile phones, SIM cards, weapons, drugs, tobacco and other illegal items entering prisons.

A total of 75 X-ray body scanners, across 74 male prisons, have disrupted approximately 20,000 attempts to smuggle harmful items into prisons.

The above said initiatives are all part of the Government’s ambitious ‘Prisons Strategy White Paper’.

The robust plan is to make prisons safer with a zero-tolerance approach to smuggling contraband.

For further details:

If you are under investigation or facing criminal proceedings concerning allegations of bringing prohibited items into prison(s), you can speak with one of our lawyers in confidence.

Please contact the Public Defender Service at any one of our four offices. We are available 24hours a day, 365 days of the year.

Cheltenham: 01242 548270

Darlington: 01352 289480

Pontypridd: 01443 629724

Swansea: 01792 633 280