Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large

Drug smuggling into jails still rife

Illegal substances are being smuggled into jails despite searches of all visitors, the Dubai Police chief said.

DUBAI // Drugs are being smuggled into jails despite searches of all visitors, the Dubai Police chief said yesterday. An official who spoke on the condition of anonymity said that 30 people were caught trying to bring drugs into prisons last year. And a few weeks ago, a prisoner died of a heroin overdose. The official said all those caught were arrested and referred to the Public Prosecution. Five inmates are being tried on additional drugs charges.

The chief, Lt Col Dahi Khalfan Tamim, said police could not completely halt the smuggling of narcotics into prisons, which is a problem worldwide. "No one is allowed to enter jail without being thoroughly searched. However, in some cases inmates or their visitors hide the drugs in places which cannot be touched," he said. "It is not an easy matter and the searches are made on a continuous basis. If an inmate is somehow able to smuggle drugs inside and uses it, then he should also be accountable for his actions."

Lt Col Khalfan said prisoners came up with ingenious ways of getting drugs into prisons. In some cases inmates who go to clinics or hospitals for check-ups pick up narcotics left by accomplices in bathrooms or other places. He said there had been no recorded cases of police officers or jail guards caught smuggling drugs into prisons, but that authorities would take such cases seriously: "If any such case arises where someone takes a risk like that then we will not leave them alone."

The chief spoke at the signing of a memorandum of understanding with Bait Al Khair, a charity that supports former drug addicts and their families, A 23-year-old Emirati recently died of a heroin overdose in a holding cell. The man's family said he died four months after being arrested on a drug charge, but that he was never convicted by a court. His brother said the family did not understand how he got the heroin inside a cell at the Al Rashidiya police station.

He said his mother and sisters visited him the day before he died and he appeared to be in good health. "This is a very dangerous situation. Being held by police should protect you and not expose you to drugs that could kill you," the brother, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said this week. rbaker@thenational.ae

Back to the top

More articles


Editor's Picks

 Rolling out the structure for the set. Mona Al Marzooqi / The National

Star Wars: Episode VII evidence in Abu Dhabi desert

After more than a week of speculation, The National has what are believed to be the first photos of a Star Wars shoot in the Abu Dhabi desert.

No words can describe this April 17, your captions will

Have a catchy caption for this picture. Share it with us and we might publish it and reward you.

 The year-long project aims to create a form of social autobiography — the story of Dubai documented by those who know it best, the people who live there.

Zoom in! This is your Dubai in a single image

On our sixth birthday, we are all about pictures. So here is our #mydubai offering. Using zoom.it, explore the city.

 Amir Khan, during a workout at the Gloves Community Centre on March 24, 2014 in Bolton, England, says his fight will be the real main event in Las Vegas on May 3. Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Amir Khan says bout with Luis Collazo ‘will steal the show’ in Las Vegas on May 3

British-Pakistani boxer Amir Khan says his fight with Luis Collazo will be the main attraction on same fight card led by Floyd Mayweather Jr and Marcos Maidana, writes Omar Al Raisi.

 This Dh17,000 Miele system can prepare your choice of coffee - from capuccino to espresso - at a touch of a button. Pawan Singh / The National

In pictures: Miele puts art in coffee making

Miele has devoted itself to the art of preparing the black liquid with its beautifully designed coffee machines, living up to its mantra of turning kitchens into cafés.

Events

To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National