ST JOHN’S, Antigua – Two recruits hired to work at the prison last year were caught with drugs and other contraband within hours of government implementing measures to beef up security following Thursday’s jail break.
One of the guards, Michael Mourillon, has since been charged with possession of 60 grammes of cannabis, possession with intent to sell the drug and conveying prohibited articles into the prison.
Minister with responsibility for the prison, Steadroy “Cutie” Benjamin told OBSERVER media Mourillon will appear in court today.
Benjamin said he was advised that Mourillon turned up for duty at the jail Saturday night, around 10 pm, and was reportedly hesitant to enter.
OBSERVER media understands police were stationed at the penal institution and Mourillon indicated he was not ready to enter since he was on his phone and it was still early.
Benjamin said, “He was invited to enter and when they searched they found marijuana, together with cellular phones wrapped in plastic and stashed at the bottom of his food container, several ‘Bamboo’ packages, and other items.”
Other items included scissors, knives and ‘high leaf’ and tobacco.
A day before Mourillon was nabbed, one of his colleagues also allegedly smuggled contraband into the overcrowded prison.
Well-placed sources said that instead of turning the matter over to police when it occurred Friday morning, prison authorities told the recruit he should resign.
It was reported to the media the recruit entered the prison with a bag, which he left on another officer’s desk. When the officer later went to his desk and saw the bag, he checked to ascertain whose it was. It was then that he came upon the contraband.
One source said the matter was “kept under wraps” because the prison was already under scrutiny for seemingly ‘lax security’ which led to the escape of fraud-accused Kenroy Marshall and triple murder convict Avie Howell. Howell died after being shot during his recapture on Friday while Marshall, who was also shot, remains hospitalised, up to press time. He is recovering from surgery.
(More in today’s Daily OBSERVER)