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Prison worker tried to smuggle drugs into jail hidden in cheese roll

PUBLISHED: 08:20 17 July 2018 | UPDATED: 10:15 17 July 2018

Wayland Prison 


Wayland Prison Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Copyright: Archant 2015

A civilian member of staff at Wayland jail was caught trying to smuggle drugs into the prison hidden in a cheese roll, a court heard.

Duane Lee Parker, 40, of Silfield Avenue, Wymondham, was arrested in March, last year, when 36 tablets of Subutex, which is a Class C drug, was found hidden in his lunchbox, following undercover surveillance by the prison, Norwich Crown Court heard.

Parker admitted bringing a prohibited item Subutex into Wayland Prison, possession of cannabis and possession of the psychoactive substance Spice,

He also admitted misconduct in a public office between August 2016 and March 13, 2017.

Jamie Sawyer, prosecuting, said Parker, who had been working in a prison workshop, had been kept under surveillance following concerns after a packet of suspected drugs was found in an area where Parker had been working.

As well as bringing Subutex into jail, Mr Sawyer said Parker was found to have allowed inmates to access a workshop computer and permitted one to read sensitive daily briefing notes,

He said Parker also made collections from a PO Box, in Norwich, of prohibited contraband, which he then brought into the jail.

Mr Sawyer said that a search of Parker’s home had found a shoebox containing cash, cannabis and Spice.

Jailing him for 14 months, Judge Andrew Shaw said that bringing prohibited items and drugs into prison led to “bullying and intimidation” among prisoners as well as the danger of attacks on prison staff by inmates under the influence of drugs.

He said that as a civilian worker he was made aware of the rules and the difficulties of working in a prison environment and the need to report any concerns and said: “You cannot escape responsibility.”

He said he would failing in his public duty if he did not immediately send Parker to jail.

John Morgans, for Parker, said he was employed through an agency originally as a cleaner with no contact with prisoners, but instead found himself in a role which was out of his depth.

He said he was unable to resist the pressures put on him by inmates to bring in items.

He said Parker had mental health difficulties and had now had to give up work.

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