UK prison moves to stop drone deliveries of contraband

2017-05-17 06:31


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London - A British prison will install anti-drone technology to stop contraband being smuggled through the skies, the jail's governor says.

The Channel Island of Guernsey is installing an "invisible dome" above its prison to stop cellphones, drugs and weapons being smuggled in, governor David Matthews said.

"Many prison governors are struggling with the drones. The problem is you never know you have a drone until one crashes, so you don't know how many successful deliveries you had", he said. 

The new SkyFence system will be rolled out ready for action by the end of July.

It will be the first time the new technology is to be deployed, according to Drone Defence founder, Richard Gill, whose company created the system.

Blank screen

Gill said SkyFence detects a drone and then activates a disruptive electronic fence that covers the whole of the prison like a dome.

"The fence disrupts the command video signals that the drone sends to its operator on the ground. The operator sees a blank screen and can no longer fly or control the drone", he said.

Depending on the size of the site, the system costs between £100 000 and £250 000.

The British government last month announced the creation of a new team to tackle drones flying into prisons.

There have been a number of drone-related convictions, with two men jailed on Tuesday for flying cocaine, cannabis and cellphones into The Mount prison northwest of London.

Read more on:    uk  |  drones  |  prisons

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