Breath tests to crackdown on prison smoking
Saturday 28th September 2013, 9:00AM BST.
BREATH tests will be introduced at Guernsey’s prison to crackdown on inmates breaking its smoking ban with smuggled tobacco.
Les Nicolles prison governor Dave Matthews said that only a ‘small minority’ of prisoners were breaking its no-smoking policy, but warned that they could face an extended stay inside if caught.
It follows smoking being made formally illegal in the prison in the summer, after the ban was introduced from the beginning of the year. The breath tests, which will be used to test against suspected breaches of the ban, will start from 4 November.
‘We could look to extend their period in custody, ultimately – if we did not deal with it internally and sent it to a judge to deal with,’ he said. ‘It is illegal.’
Mr Matthews said so far three or four prisoners had been caught breaking the ban, but it was before smoking was made formally illegal at Les Nicolles. All lost their prison privileges. Prisoners and staff on the whole had reacted positively to the smoke-free policy and credited much of the success to the sale of electronic cigarettes, he said. Prisoners had access to the Quitline service and its free nicotine patches and counselling.