Women sprinkling cocaine and heroin on hair to smuggle into Irish jails

The cocaine snorting device found in a Belfast bar toilet
The cocaine snorting device found in a Belfast bar toilet

Ulster jails are being rocked by the hairiest drugs scam ever to hit them.

For heroin is being smuggled in behind bars – in female visitors’ hair.

The deadly narcotic is being pummelled into powder and women are sprinkling it into their hair.

If they get through prison security screening their partners inside simply suck or sniff the heroin from the women’s hair.

But NI Prison Officers’ boss Adrian Smith says jail wardens here have already copped to the hair-raising and potentially deadly drugs smuggling scam. 

“Procedures have been put in place to monitor and prevent it,” he said yesterday.

The Prison Officers’ Association chief also revealed that jail staff here are literally ‘licking’ another heroin-smuggling ruse. 

That is where heroin is turned into a kind of gel and concealed  behind postage stamps in letters and cards going into the main jails like Maghaberry, Magilligan and Hydebank.

Inmates were then simply stripping off the stamp, using steam to release the vapour, and then sniffing or licking the back of the stamp and the part of the envelope it had covered. 

However, the prison authorities are aware of that, too.

“Letters are now opened before they go to prisoners, and the envelopes and stamps removed,” Adrian Smith explained. 

Now, however, the Sunday World can reveal that NI prisons are facing another potential drugs double whammy.

Published here is the first picture of a new ‘vial’ drugs scam which is hitting pubs and clubs here.

It is a mini clear glass vial small enough to be smuggled in jails in  parts of the human body, and therefore could only be discovered in strip searches. 

It is already being found in the toilets of bars, restaurants and clubs here.

And it does away with the need for drugs-users to sniff from lines of cocaine on the tops of toilet cisterns or sink tops – possibly leaving tell-tale signs for staff or the police to detect,  follow-up and use as evidence.

“The vial is so small it can easily be carried into premises in pockets or handbags,” said one barowner whose staff found one of the vile vials this week. 

“The powder is simply poured inside, and there’s a nozzle for snorting or sniffing the drug.

“The vial leaves no traces, and it can be used time and time again. Someone was careless with this one (above), and left it behind them, unused this time, with the white powder still visible inside.

“But I’m showing it to the Sunday World to alert the public to this latest drugs racket.”

Hospitality Ulster boss Colin Neill said: “Drugs are a problem in society as a whole. That is reflected in the hospitality industry.

“It’s very difficult to spot and stop. We are doing our best. However, this new vial which has just emerged is very hard to detect.

“We are working on ways to combat it, but just like with  prisons, it’s a difficult and delicate path to tread.”

Prison officers here are also steeling themselves for attempts to smuggle the so-called ‘zombie drug’ known as Spice into NI prisons. An epidemic of the synthetic cannabis-like drug, which often leaves addicts unable to walk or speak, has hit prisons across the water. 

Warders there are being pulled off duty having taken sick from accidentally inhaling the Spice fumes.

Twenty officers at one English jail had to go home sick.

Spice can also come in liquid form and be sprayed on to paper in the form of actual letters being sent to inmates. 

Adrian Smith says the Spice smuggling scam hasn’t hit Ulster jails yet, and therefore prison officers here have not suffered the effects as yet.

However, he said: “We are prepared for it if it happens. Security procedures have already been put in place.”

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