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Prisoner had 'no difficulty' getting drugs before death

Jason Jackson died at HMP Perth in September 2013 after taking a cocktail of drugs.

Prison: FAI held into prisoner's death (file pic).
Prison: FAI held into prisoner's death (file pic).

A prisoner who died after taking a cocktail of drugs had "no difficulty" getting them in jail.

Jason Jackson, a habitual heroin and cannabis user, was jailed for ten months in 2013.

He was admitted to HMP Perth on September 24 and died there three days later.

A Fatal Accident Inquiry (FAI) was held and set out six ways his death might have been avoided.

The Scottish Prison Service (SPS) said there was "no evidence" Jackson had drugs, but this was disputed by sheriff Lindsay Foulis.

Drugs were found in Jackson's cell after his death and Foulis said it appeared he had "the ability to access drugs without difficulty".

Shortly after arriving in prison, suspicions arose Jackson had "banked" drugs - smuggled them inside his body - and he was transferred into solitary confinement.

Prison officers are not allowed to carry out cavity searches of inmates.

Jackson died at HMP Perth sometime between 8am and 9am on September 28.

A postmortem established that he had taken fatal quantities of buprenorphine, gabapentin and phenazepam after being transferred into solitary.

Sheriff Foulis said Jackson might not have died if he had told medical staff what drugs he had taken.

The sheriff also noted that Jackson's death might also have been avoided if prison officers had carried out more thorough checks on him and if they had arranged for a further medical assessment.

'This case highlights the tragic consequences of the use of illicitly introduced drugs into prisons.'
SPS spokeswoman

A spokeswoman for the SPS said: "We conduct a review of all deaths in custody to ensure that any lessons are learned promptly and any actions that require to be taken are taken.

"This case also highlights the tragic consequences of the use of illicitly introduced drugs into prisons. We would again wish to express our condolences to the family."

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