SAF eyed for NBP medium security compound
Evelyn Macairan (The Philippine Star) - October 29, 2016 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre is considering tapping Special Action Force (SAF) police officers to secure New Bilibid Prison’s medium and maximum security compounds.

Aguirre said yesterday he might ask the SAF to take charge of security at the medium security compound after receiving information that ever since security at the maximum security compound was tightened, the illegal drug trade was relocated to the medium security compound.

“It’s under study but funding is a principal factor,” he said, adding that the current administration “is running the operation under the budget of the previous administration.”

Since July, more than 300 SAF personnel replaced the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) jail guards detailed at the maximum security compound.

The Department of Justice  has also installed two South Korean-made signal jammers at the maximum security compound to prevent inmates from communicating with their cohorts outside the prison while more closed-circuit television cameras were also installed.

Early this month, BuCor personnel conducted an Oplan Galugad operation at the medium security compound, recovering several contraband items, including 18 mobile phones.

Aguirre previously said mobile phones serve as the main line of communication between the inmates and their cohorts and allowed them to continue with their illegal business operations.

He believes that removing mobile phones and blocking mobile phone signals would help erase the narcotics trade in the national penitentiary.  

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