A probe has been launched after inmates at a north-east superjail were caught posting on social media – just months after a similar incident at the prison.
A Facebook page created by prisoners at HMP Grampian – dubbed Costa HMP on the site – showed inmates posing for pictures and bragging about the use of the Class B drug spice.
It has been linked to violent incidents at a number of prisons and the hospitalisation of prison staff following exposure to the substance.
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In the video footage first posted on November 19, a number of prisoners are seen, their faces obscured, with two videos apparently showing inmates under the influence of drugs.
Several pictures were also posted, one of which carried the caption “another man down!” and another which refers to “Spice life”.
Inmates are also heard to call the prison “Costa del holiday camp”.
The page was removed after the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) was alerted to its existence.
Tom Fox, the head of corporate affairs at the SPS, said: “When we are told that an inmate is using social media like Facebook or Twitter from within our prison we act on that information.
“This type of activity is an offence and we will take action, including the confiscation of the device which was used and the prosecution of those involved.”
Liam Kerr, north-east MSP and justice spokesman for the Scottish Conservatives, said: “Unfortunately, these scenes have become all too common in jails across Scotland.
“It goes without saying that prisoners should not have access to social media in the first place.”
North-east Labour MSP Lewis Macdonald added: “Behaviour like this flies in the face of all the rules and expectations of prisons, but it also lets down the victims of people that have been convicted.”
Holiday camp from hell
The modern £140million prison has faced several problems since it opened five years ago.
The facility was designed to house inmates from both HMP Aberdeen and HMP Peterhead, with the capacity to hold 500 inmates of all ages.
However, young offenders were moved down south following a riot two months after it opened.
In a 14-hour drink-fueled prisoner rampage, inmates caused £150,000 damage to the interior of the building.
More than 100 prisoners were relocated with all young offenders taken to HMP Polmont in Falkirk.
It was confirmed in 2016 that the Ellon youth wing would remain closed despite calls from politicians to open it.
The boiler and heating system in the prison also had to be replaced in 2015.
Prison chiefs called for a refund on the inefficient biomass plant and had a traditional gas boiler plant installed instead.
Further issues at the jail include issues with recruitment and deliberate fires started inside cells.