Sutton man threw drugs over the fence into Ranby prison

Mansfield Magistrates Court.
Mansfield Magistrates Court.

A Sutton man has been jailed for throwing a package of synthetic cannabis into HMP Ranby in a scheme devised by inmates who operate a ‘brutal regime’ there, a court has heard.

Mark James Carter, 43, of Columbia Street, Huthwaite, admitted throwing the package of ‘Black Mamba’ over the perimeter fence on February 7, but ‘bottled out’ of throwing a second package, which prisoner officers found when they detained him.

Sanjay Jerath, prosecuting, said: “He stated that this had been arranged from within the prison. He said an unknown male had collected him from his address and gave him the packages to throw over.

“The effects of ‘Black Mamba’ are well documented and prisons have identified it as an issue with regard to its adverse effects on inmates.”

The court heard Carter was released from HMP Ranby in November after serving nine months for a non-dwelling house burglary. He has 39 convictions for 71 offences.

Simon Greaves, mitigating, said: “HMP Ranby is a complete mess. I visited recently. The governor’s request for funding to enhance security had been refused.

“A brutal regime operates there. A friend of the defendant’s has been hospitalised due to debts he is considered to have.

“Following a particular beating Mr Carter’s name and number is provided to other people inside the prison who are more sophisticated then Mr Carter and his friend.

“Following this he is contacted on a Sunday. It is made very clear he is required to do a particular task and there are consequences for his family and friends.

“He bottled throwing the second package and sought to leave. The person that brought him there had disappeared.

“This is symptomatic of a set of circumstances in the prison. Mr Carter ultimately gave into the pressure. He recognised the difficulties his friend would be in.”

The court heard Carter had been complying with the terms of his post-sentence supervision and no longer took heroin, which had been a problem in the past.

Chairman Richard Eaton said: “We have got to send a message through your sentence that this is not acceptable.

“We are all painfully aware of the impact that drugs are having in prisons and in particular Ranby.

“This matter is aggravated by the fact it was organised in prison, by your record and that you were on licence at the time, and the impact of these drugs on the prison population.”

Carter was sentenced to 26 weeks in prison and ordered to pay an £80 victim surcharge.