The plan to fix our prisons: Six-month minimum jail terms, refurbished cells and full-body scanners


The dog handlers at Wormwood Scrubs prison are feeling good. They and their canine partners have just found two packages of contraband, which were hurled over the north wall during the night, but failed to make it across the high inner fence.

The loot is now laid out on a table. There is a bagful of small, one-ounce tobacco pouches, which cost around £12 each on the high street. “Each one of these is worth £130 in prison value,” one handler says, meaning the haul of tobacco alone is worth about £7,500. There is also a black plastic bag of cannabis worth £13,000 at the inflated prices paid inside this west London prison, and two iPhones with chargers that would each fetch £1,000.

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