• Abby Chitty

Pentonville prison to receive ‘state of the art’ X-ray equipment

Tuesday 28/01/2020


The new equipment, costing £28m, is one outcome of a government crackdown on drugs and violence in prisons.

X-ray of a body cavity
The scanners have been tailored to the prison services and are able to produce images of banned items inside prisoners such as drugs, mobile phones and weapons.

HMP Pentonville will receive a new “state of the art” X-ray machine that can to detect items being smuggled into the prison from inside the human body.

The scanners have been tailored to the prison services and are able to produce images of banned items inside prisoners such as drugs, mobile phones and weapons.

Multinational conglomerate Adani Limited has been contracted to supply, install and help run the X-rays.


Installation of the kit will begin in Spring 2020 and the Ministry of Justice hopes to expand the new technology across prisons in the UK.


Prisons and Probation Minister, Lucy Frazer QC MP says: “New technology is a vital part of our efforts to stop those determined to wreak havoc in our jails. These scanners will help to stem the flow of contraband into jails and allow officers to focus on rehabilitation.”


The government is targeting struggling prisons such as HMP Pentonville, which has previously been criticised for its poor conditions and lack of sufficient safety provision for prisoners.

A dirty toilet at pentonville prison
Conditions at HMP Pentonville have deteriorated over the years.

Mr Frazer explains that the modern x-ray scanners are part of a bid to “transform our prisons, creating 10,000 additional modern places, and stepping up security to cut crime and better protect the public."

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