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PostSubject: Out of control   Mon Jan 05, 2009 2:36 pm

A SACKED prison guard at Scotland’s newest private jail last night branded it a cushy refuge where out-of-control lags run the show.

We told last week how Paula Gardner, 36, was axed from £65million Addiewell Prison in West Lothian for a minor conviction 20 years ago.

Now Paula has claimed cocky cons are brazenly smoking HEROIN and using banned mobile phones in their plush en-suite cells as under-trained staff struggle to keep order.

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And she told how one lag hurled his flat-screen telly off a balcony — but was given a new one.

Paula, of Livingston, said: “Prisoners are running the jail. They’ve got officers running after them. It’s funny to watch. One prisoner threw his flat-screen TV over a balcony but it was replaced right away.

“There are drugs inside. Other officers told me they could smell heroin being smoked.” She added: “A lot of the staff don’t have much experience of working in a prison. It’s a shambles.”

Last night it was also claimed it’s easier to land a job at 750-inmate Addiewell — run by private firm Kalyx — than at McDonald’s.

A 38-year-old dad from Linlithgow, who asked not to be named, turned down a job there.

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He said: “The interview lasted only ten minutes and was about as difficult as applying for a job in McDonald’s. It’s a sham.”

Last night Tory justice spokesman Bill Aitken added: “It appears that the cons are running the jail.

“It is high time Justice Minister Kenny MacAskill got a grip.”

Labour justice spokesman Paul Martin said: “Prisoners are making a mockery of the system.”

Last night prison director Audrey Park said: “Kalyx has a very stringent recruitment process which is approved by the Scottish Prison Service.”

The SPS said anyone who witnessed “wrongdoing” should report it.
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