Police in Australia have arrested a man accused of using a drone to smuggle drugs into a prison. In a statement released Monday, Victoria police said that the unidentified suspect and a woman were found in a car Sunday afternoon with "what was believed to be a drone with four engines and a small quantity of drugs." The drone had been "hovering in the vicinity" of a prison near Melbourne, though it's not clear whether any drugs or other contraband were actually delivered. The 28-year-old suspect has been charged with drug possession and attempting to commit an indictable offense, and is due to appear in court next week.
"it’s going to be very difficult to stop these drones."
This isn't the first time that drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), have been used to smuggle contraband into jails. In November, police in Georgia arrested four people on charges of using a UAV to deliver tobacco to a prison yard, and in 2011, Russian police confiscated 700 grams of heroin that were to be delivered to a convict awaiting trial in jail.
David McCauley of Australia's Public Service Association said Sunday's incident underscores the extent to which smugglers are using more advanced methods to get contraband across prison walls. "At the end of the day if they can throw tennis balls over the wall with drugs in them, and with staffing levels the way they are, it’s going to be very difficult to stop these drones," McCauley told the Guardian.