“MASS INTOXIFICATION” At Cumbria Prison – As Prisons Minister Rory Stewart Does A Photo Call At Bristol Prison 250 Miles Away

In their latest annual report published today 1st March 2019 the IMB at HMP Haverigg, Cumbria’s only prison says there is continuing concern about the impact of widespread use of Psychoactive Substances (PS) not only on those addicted to its use but on the general prison population, staff and but also on the overall regime.

The report is published on the day that the Prisons’s MP – and Prisons Minister – Rory Stewart – spends the day 250 miles away at Bristol Prison.

Death risk from Psychotic Drugs

 It is disturbing to note in two reports from the Prisons and Probation Ombudsman, that PS may have been a contributory factor in two deaths in custody which occurred during the year within weeks of each other. Near fatalities in the latter half of the year have only been prevented by the swift and effective action of officers and healthcare staff.

Increased surveillance systems initially disrupted the supply chain of illicit drugs into the prison, but access to PS resumed, despite the best efforts of the management.

IMB Chair Lynne Chambers explains

“The Board has observed on a weekly and sometimes daily basis, the effects of the use of illicit substances, and on one day in November, when seventeen prisoners were found to be under the influence of PS in a ‘mass intoxication’

The impact on the populations of South and West Cumbria of the concentration of Northwest Ambulances at the prison throughout that day is likely to have been significant”.

Emotional challenges

The geographical isolation of HMP Haverigg, the limitations of public transport and an underdeveloped road network present both practical and emotional challenges to prisoners and their families in maintaining links. However, the Board commends the innovative work of the “Visitors and Children’s Support Group” in hosting a range of events for Families, Lifer/Long term prisoners, Enhanced prisoners, and the Kainos “Challenge to Change” programme.

Although tackling the use of PS and other illicit substances, has, necessarily, been of high priority throughout the reporting year, the Board has, nonetheless, observed the good progress and positive impact of the Rehabilitative Culture initiative on the prison population.

Mark Leech, Editor of The Prisons Handbook for England and Wales, said it was a “shocking report”.

Mr Leech said: “Rory Stewart, who is not only a Cumbrian Member of Parliament but also Prisons Minister, should not be all smiles and shaking hands 250 miles away outside Bristol Prison – but right outside Haverigg main gate answering questions as to what on earth he is going to do to correct the defects identified in this shocking report.

“It seems Rory Stewart couldn’t care less”

Key Report Findings  

Are prisoners treated fairly?  

The effectiveness of the Rehabilitative Culture and Restorative Justice initiatives have had a significant impact on the outcome of adjudications with the IMB receiving just two applications from prisoners arising from this process. The Independent Monitoring Board is of the view that prisoners are treated fairly.

Are prisoners treated humanely?

The Board is of the opinion that the prison continues to have an emphasis on humane treatment and has regularly observed sensitive and respectful interaction between staff and prisoners. However, there have been occasions when some prisoners have had to endure unacceptable and adverse living conditions.,

Are prisoners prepared well for their release?

The Board has received a large number of applications from prisoners relating to sentence management and of these a third concerned preparations for release including accommodation, approved premises, bank accounts, support services and medication, for example. The Board is concerned that lack of preparation and resources to support prisoners in the community after release may increase the risk of re-offending.

For further information contact: the Independent Monitoring Board at HMP Haverigg:

Notes

The Independent Monitoring Board is a body of volunteers established in accordance with the Prison Act 1952 and the Asylum Act 1999 which require every prison and IRC [Immigration Removal/Reception Centre] to be monitored by an independent Board, appointed by the Secretary of State for Justice, from members of the community.

To carry out these duties effectively IMB members have right of access to every prisoner, all parts of the prison and also to the prison’s records.

HMP Haverigg opened over 50 years ago, is on an old military airfield site dating from World War II and some of the original wartime buildings, are still in use.

Most of the prisoners are serving sentences of four or more years, although a significant number are serving a life sentence and a small number are of foreign nationality.

Read The Report

HMP Durham: Must Address Violence, Drugs and Deaths says Inspectors

HMP Durham, a heavily overcrowded prison, was found by inspectors to have significant problems with drugs and violence and worryingly high levels of self-harm and self-inflicted and drug-related deaths.

Durham became a reception prison in 2017. Around 70% of the 900 men in the jail were either on remand or subject to recall and over 70% had been in Durham for less than three months. On average, 118 new prisoners arrived each week. Significant numbers of prisoners said they arrived at the jail feeling depressed or suicidal. Self-harm was very high.

Peter Clarke, HM Chief Inspector of Prisons, said: “Our overriding concern was around the lack of safety. Since the last inspection in October 2016, there had been seven self-inflicted deaths, and it was disappointing to see that the response to recommendations from the Prisons and Probation Ombudsman (which investigates deaths) had not been addressed with sufficient vigour or urgency.

“There had also been a further five deaths in the space of eight months where it was suspected that illicit drugs might have played a role.” Drugs were readily available in the jail and nearly two-thirds of prisoners said it was easy to get drugs; 30% said they had acquired a drug habit since coming into the prison. “These were very high figures”, Mr Clarke said, though the prison had developed a strategy to address the drugs problem.

The leadership, Mr Clarke added, was “immensely frustrated by the fact that they had no modern technology available to them to help them in their efforts to stem the flow of drugs into the prison. We were told that they had been promised some modern scanning equipment but that it had been diverted to another prison.” The scale of the drugs problem and related violence meant that technological support was urgently needed.

Since the last inspection at Durham in 2016, violence had doubled and the use of force by staff had increased threefold, though some of the increase in force may have been due to new staff who were not yet confident in using de-escalation techniques. Governance of the use of force had improved.

Mr Clarke added: “There were some very early signs that the level of violence was beginning to decline, but it was too early to be demonstrable as a sustainable trend.”

Alongside these concerns, inspectors noted “many positive things happening at the prison.” These included the introduction of in-cell phones and electronic kiosks on the wings for prisoners to make applications, which had “undoubtedly been beneficial”. The disruption caused by prisoners needing to be taken to court had been reduced by the extensive use of video links.

A new and more predictable daily regime had recently been introduced, increasing access for men to amenities such as showers and laundry on the wings. “For a prison of this type, the time out of cell enjoyed by prisoners was reasonable and it was quite apparent that, despite its age, the prison was basically clean and decent,” Mr Clarke said. It was also good that the leadership saw new staff as an opportunity to make improvements, not an inexperienced liability.

Overall, Mr Clarke said:

“There was no doubt that there was an extent to which HMP Durham was still going through the process of defining, refining and responding to its role as a reception prison. The very large throughput of prisoners gave rise to the risk that taking them through the necessary processes could predominate over identifying individual needs and ensuring favourable outcomes. However, the prison was aware of this risk. The most pressing needs are to get to grips with the violence of all kinds, make the prison safer and reduce the flow of drugs. Only then will the benefits flow from the many creditable initiatives that are being implemented.”

Mark Leech, Editor of The Prisons Handbook for England and Wales said:

“Apart from security, safety must be the primary function of any prison but the number of deaths at Durham, and particularly the failure to implement the recommendations of the Prisons and Probation Ombudsman designed to reduce deaths in custody, is deeply worrying.

“Only yesterday I wrote an open Letter about this issue to the Ombudsman, and this report reinforces the point that prisons must have the resources to implement PPO recommendations otherwise what is the use of them in the first place?”

Prisons minister Rory Stewart said: “We are determined to install full airport-style security with the right dogs, technology, scanners and search teams to detect drugs.

“We will install the technology in Durham and we will be rolling it out across our local prisons. Tackling drugs is vital for reducing violence.”

Mail & Property Scanners installed in ’10 Jails Project’ Prisons

Prisons have been issued with specialist scanning equipment and detailed instructions on handling incoming mail following a surge in attempts to post drug-laced paper and other contraband to inmates.

Correspondence is being exploited to convey illicit substances and items into establishments, according to an official security briefing seen by the Press Association.

Instances have been reported in all prison regions in England and Wales, and in both the male and female estate.

Finds have included “large amounts” of drugs, tobacco and sim cards, the document circulated by HM Prison & Probation Service says.

It also reveals that some jails have reported chemically laced paper containing household chemicals such as alloy wheel cleaner, insect poison, koi carp sedative and acetone.

Prisons Minister Rory Stewart said scanners which can detect invisible traces of drugs soaked into clothing and paper have been installed at 10 of the most challenging jails.

He said drugs in prison have been a “game-changer”, driving self-harm and extreme violence, adding: “As the methods used to smuggle drugs into prisons continue to evolve, our response to that threat becomes ever more agile and vigilant.”

Smuggling attempts involving mail have come under the spotlight after psychoactive substances such as Spice were identified as a major threat to prison stability.

The drugs, formerly known as “legal highs”, have had a “significant” impact on the safety and security of establishments, the briefing note says.

The official guidance, obtained by the Press Association following a Freedom of Information request, says intelligence continues to suggest that paper laced with psychoactive substances (PS) is being supplied via correspondence.

It states: “The potency of PS paper can vary significantly between batches and even within different sections of a single sheet.

“As our ability to detect herbal PS and interrupt conveyance has improved, prisoners have increasingly sought to convey PS-soaked paper as it is easier to conceal.

“Actual levels of laced paper entering the establishments are not known; however, intelligence reporting indicates that post appears to be the preferred method.”

The briefing, marked “Official”, was issued to governors, security departments and mail room staff in November.

It says: “Whilst it is recognised that mail is one method in which prisoners may receive illicit items, we should not introduce processes that indefinitely treat all such correspondence as suspicious.

“Where justified, we should open, read, and stop mail on a case-by-case basis.”

Staff members who suspect that mail contains illicit items are advised to wear personal protective equipment for health and safety reasons and evidence preservation, the five-page paper says.

Photocopying correspondence and providing prisoners with copies of the original letters may be considered if it is proportionate to the risk posed, the guidance says.

Any establishment that imposes this measure for all post should review the position at least every three months, while legal and confidential mail can only be photocopied if there is “specific intelligence or suspicion”.

The document recommends that prisons communicate with law firms to ensure genuine correspondence is correctly marked, following warnings about the use of bogus legal letters for smuggling attempts.

Where there is a local supplier of newspapers and magazines, jails should consider using more than one to “disrupt potential conveyance activity in this area”.

The document emphasises that “due care should be given not to significantly delay a prisoner’s access to mail, in the interest of ensuring minimal impact on family life”.

Peter Dawson, director of the Prison Reform Trust, said: “This guidance shows why tackling drugs in prison is more complicated than people sometimes like to think.”

He suggested a straightforward way to reduce the problem would be to give prisoners “controlled access” to electronic communications, adding: “You can’t spray Spice on to an email.”

Mark Leech, Editor of Converse, the largest circulation national monthly prisons newspaper, welcomed the development but said it needed to go much further.

Mr Leech said: “Drugs are a menace in our prisons leading to violence, bullying, self-harm and suicides, anything that reduces the importation into prisons of drugs is to be welcomed.

“But installing scanners in less than 10 per cent of prisons is woefully inadequate, the Prisons Minister needs to get real and install them across the prison estate.

“Prison governors can authorise the opening of mail between inmates and social contacts to check for illicit enclosures, and they also have the power to open legal correspondence, and read it, where there are grounds for believing that it contains illicit enclosures or doesn’t come from a bona fide legal source.”

The latest prison safety statistics will be published at 09.30 today – Thursday 31st January 2019.

UK Border Officer Jailed for 23 Years in Drugs Plot

A UK border officer has been jailed for 23 years over a foiled plot to smuggle £3.6 million worth of drugs and guns into the country.

Simon Pellett, 37, was arrested in France in a supermarket car park in October 2017 after being caught with a Border Agency van loaded with the illegal goods.

In the van were heavy bags containing 28kg of cocaine, 6kg of heroin, eight automatic pistols, two revolvers, three silencers and ammunition, including a magazine for a sub-machine gun.

Pellett, who had been a UK Border Agency official for 12 years, was sentenced on Friday at Isleworth Crown Court after being convicted earlier this week of several charges.

“This was a shocking breach of trust and duty for a man whose job was to protect our border from just this kind of criminal activity,” Judge Robin Johnson said.

Pellett, of Dover, and two accomplices, Alex Howard and David Baker, were arrested in Loon-Plage, near Calais, by French and British authorities who swooped following a joint operation.

The combined street value of the “high purity” drugs was some £3.4 million.

“This was a major enterprise and the drugs had they pervaded the market would have caused untold misery,” Judge Johnson said.

“The guns were desirable on account of their size, their firepower and the fact some were new.

“These weapons were the tools of the trade for those connected with the drug trade to protect their territories. I have no doubt they could have been used to maim or murder.”

The judge said Pellet, when caught, claimed he thought he was only transporting a “mysterious oil”.

He was convicted on three counts of conspiracy to be knowingly concerned in concealing goods with intent to avoid prohibition on importation, namely cocaine, heroin and firearms.

He was also sentenced for one count of misconduct in public office because he was a Border Agency officer.

Baker, of Beckenham in south London, and Howard, of Sittingbourne in Kent, also received heavy sentences on Friday.

On the day of the arrest, Baker, 55, drove his own car from a hotel in Belgium to the car park in Loon-Plage and loaded the bags into Pellett’s Government van as authorities watched on.

Howard, a roofer by trade, had been keeping lookout nearby when he was caught, later claiming he thought he was helping smuggle cigarettes.

Baker was jailed for 20 years and 115 days on three charges relating to the cocaine, heroin and firearms.

Howard received 10 years and 115 days in prison over two charges relating to the drugs only.

Defence laywers argued the trio were simply couriers of the goods and others higher up had organised the smuggling.

“Those at the bottom of the chain get their hands dirty,” Pellett’s lawyer Nigel Lambert QC said.

Pellett had no prior convictions and was “gripped” by a gambling addiction and depression at the time of the plot, the court heard.

“It was an amalgamation of these things that led him to act so obviously out of character,” his lawyer Nigel Lambert QC said in mitigation.

Mark Leech, Editor of The Prisons Handbook for England Wales remarked:

“The question for me is not why he did it, we know why he did it – money – it’s how many times he successfully got away with it in the past before he was caught – you have to be either very unlucky, or downright stupid, to get caught in something as big as this the first time you give it a go.”

HMP Preston – No Mambulances Since January. Copy that?

The IMB at Preston report the prison has found an effective way to stop inmates getting their hands on psychoactive substances like Spice – by using a photocopier.

Preston staff found the drugs were being smuggled into the jail via the prisoners’ mail, after the paper used to write the letters was soaked in the substance.

The notes could then be ripped up and smoked by the inmates.

In a bid to crack down on the problem, the category B men’s prison began photocopying all mail and keeping the originals locked away.

According to an annual report by the Independent Monitoring Board, the move has produced positive results – with not a single ambulance call-out needed for a prisoner under the influence since the scheme began in January.

The report said: “The Board’s analysis has clearly identified the effectiveness of this precaution in a directly correlated reduction in reported incidents of use of PS (psychoactive substances).

“Since the photocopying was introduced there have been no ambulances called to take a prisoner to hospital under the influence, resulting in savings to the NHS and improvements to prisoner welfare.”

The watchdog admitted the move might not eradicate the problem completely – adding that prisoners would find new ways of getting hold of the drugs – but said it had “demonstrably reduced the availability of PS within the prison”.

The report suggested the use of drug testing devices in prisons to scan incoming mail could prove a more cost-effective and less labour-intensive solution in the long term.

Read the report in full here.

Well-Organised Gang Used Drones to Deliver Drugs to Inmates, Court Told

A “well-organised” gang used drones to fly class A drugs and mobile phones into UK jails, delivering contraband straight to inmates’ windows, a court has heard.

It is alleged that Lee Anslow, while he was a serving prisoner at HMP Hewell in Worcestershire, conspired to set up deliveries at prisons around the country, flown in by a pilot on the outside.

When prison officers raided his cell they found fake food cans packed with cannabis, crack cocaine and sim cards, which prosecutors claim were drone-delivered.

He is charged with being at the centre of a “spider-web of activity”, conspiring with four others to bring drugs, mobile phones and sim cards into jail between April 2016 and June 2017.

Stella Deakin, who is alleged to have driven the drone pilot, and inmates Shane Hadlington, Paul Ferguson and Stefan Rattray are standing trial with Anslow at Birmingham Crown Court.

All five are also charged with bringing Mamba and other psychoactive drugs into British jails between May and June 2017.

The drone operator, Brandon Smith, 24, of Kingstanding Road, Tipton, has already admitted his part in the conspiracy, jurors were told.

opening the case on Thursday, Michelle Heeley, prosecuting, told a jury of nine men and three women they would hear telephone evidence which suggested Anslow was “organising drone deliveries throughout numerous prisons” and that he was linked to jails and inmates in the case.

She added that while he was “not directly seen” retrieving packages, he was “one of the main organisers”.

The Crown has alleged parcels of contraband – worth up to £20,000 a time at prison prices – were delivered, often hanging from a length of weighted fishing line tied to the drone, to cell windows, recovered with a hook, and then sold on the inside.

In April 2017, a drone was seized from a Vauxhall Corsa parked in a lane near HMP Hewell, and its microchip showed it had made eight flights to the jail near Redditch.

Ms Heeley said the prosecution would show how the defendants were “inter-linked”.

Deakin, Hadlington’s girlfriend, was stopped in a Volkswagen Golf carrying a drone after a package was delivered to HMP Wymott, Lancashire, where her partner was serving time.

He had served a sentence alongside Rattray, while Anslow was a former cellmate of Ferguson, the court heard.

Ms Heeley said: “This gang changed phones frequently to try and avoid detection, they were organised and active across the country.”

Drone deliveries were made to HMP Oakwood, HMP Featherstone and HMP Dovegate in Staffordshire, HMP Wymott, HMP Birmingham, HMP Liverpool, HMP Hewell, and HMP Risley in Cheshire.

Ms Heeley told jurors: “These defendants were responsible for the supply of drugs and phones into prisons across the country.

“They used whatever methods they could, including flying drones carrying drugs straight to prison cell windows.

“All of them deny they were part of any agreement to take items in prison. The prosecution say you can be sure they were.”

The Crown’s barrister said: “Once you start putting the pieces together you can see how this group worked, flyers using unregistered phones to link up with prisoners like Anslow. Then arranging flights, using people like Deakin to drive them to prisons, with Hadlington, Ferguson and Stefan Rattray collecting the deliveries on the inside.

“The evidence shows this well-organised group working together.

“Once you have analysed it all, heard from the witnesses and looked at the documents you can be sure they are all guilty as charged.”

Anslow, 31, Ferguson, 27, Deakin, 40, of Boundary Hill, Dudley, Hadlington, 29, of Clay Lane, Oldbury, and Rattray, 28, of Attingham Drive, Dudley, deny all charges.

The trial, estimated to last six weeks, continues.

HMP Birmingham – Availability of Drugs Still Affecting Safety

HMP-Birmingham1The stability of HMP Birmingham was being adversely affected by the high volume of illicit drugs available, said Peter Clarke, Chief Inspector of Prisons. Prison managers and staff were clearly committed to moving on and making progress after the disturbance last year, he added. Today he published the report of an unannounced inspection of the local West Midlands jail.

HMP Birmingham holds a complex mix of prisoners and is characterised by a very high throughput, with around 500 new prisoners each month and an average stay of only six weeks. In December 2016 a major disturbance took place at the prison. Severe damage was caused to much of the more modern accommodation. Four wings were undergoing repairs at the time of the inspection and were not expected to be in use for some months. Following the disturbance, around 500 prisoners were moved out of the jail, leaving a population of over 900 to be housed in the older Victorian accommodation.

The inspection two months after this serious disturbance was not to enquire into events leading up to it, look for causal factors or comment on the handling of the disturbance. The decision to inspect was to establish the extent to which the prison was housing its remaining prisoners safely and decently and to see whether rehabilitative activity and resettlement work were being successfully delivered. It was also intended to give a snapshot of how the prison was performing in February 2017 to give the leadership a baseline from which they could plan the continuing recovery.

Inspectors were concerned to find that:

  • the safety and stability of the prison were being adversely affected by the high volume of illicit drugs, particularly new psychoactive substances;
  • 50% of prisoners said it was easy to get drugs, and as in so many prisons, drugs were giving rise to high levels of violence, debt and bullying;
  • the prison had a good drug supply reduction strategy and was working well with local police, but more needed to be done;
  • there was still too much inconsistency in the way poor behaviour was dealt with by staff;
  • despite a good range of education and training provision, not enough prisoners were able to take advantage of what was on offer and there was insufficient priority given to getting prisoners to their activities.

 

Inspectors were, however, pleased to find that:

  • there were many positive interactions between staff and prisoners and, in general, staff-prisoner relationships were respectful;
  • health care was generally good; and
  • the community rehabilitation company (CRC) was working better than in other jails.

 

Peter Clarke said:

“The leadership of the prison was clearly committed to meeting the many challenges presented by this large and complex establishment. The events of December 2016 had had a profound effect upon many members of staff. There was still, some two months later, a palpable sense of shock at the suddenness and ferocity of what had happened. Despite this, there was a very clear determination on the part of leadership and staff to move on from the disorder, rebuild and make progress.

“I am well aware that this report is likely to receive very close attention from many people who would like to understand the reasons for the riot. That is not the purpose of this report, and to attempt to use it in that way would be a mistake. This report is no more, and no less, than an account of the treatment of prisoners and the conditions in which we saw them being held during the period of the inspection.”

Michael Spurr, Chief Executive of HM Prison & Probation Service, said:

“This report provides an overview of HMP Birmingham two months after the serious disturbance which took place on 16 December. The Chief Inspector rightly draws attention to the impact of the riot on prisoners and staff but describes a prison which is now ‘in recovery’ and making positive progress.

“There remains more to do to provide purposeful activity and to tackle violence and illicit drug use but the staff and the leadership team deserve credit for the commendable way they have responded to the challenges to date.

“We are determined to learn lessons from what happened at Birmingham and will work closely with G4S to achieve improvement. Additional staff are being recruited and G4S will use the recommendations in this report to drive progress over the coming months.”

A copy of the full report, published on 28 June, can be found on the HM Inspectorate of Prisons website at: www.justiceinspectorates.gov.uk/hmiprisons

Prison officers ignore use of legal highs and pornography

HMP Rochester
HMP Rochester

Prison staff ignore inmates who are under the influence of “legal highs” in a jail where their use is a major problem, according to a watchdog report published today.

The Times reported drugs had been found at the rate of ten a month, including very large parcels that had been thrown over the wall, at Rochester jail in Kent. Prison inspectors saw inmates who were clearly under the influence of psychoactive substances when they arrived at the 740-inmate jail in September.

Their inspection report said that the use and supply of the substances, such as Spice, was a significant threat to prisoners. Inmates said that it was easier to get them than tobacco.

“There had been 62 drugs finds in the previous six months, including some very large parcels that had been thrown over the wall. During the inspection we observed prisoners obviously under the influence of these substances. However, some staff seemed indifferent to the number of prisoners clearly under the influence of drugs”, the report said.

The availability of so-called legal highs such as Spice was also leading to debt and bullying among inmates: 40 prisoners were held in isolation as they feared for their safety because of debts related to drugs.

Anabolic steroids and illegal buprenorphine (Subutex) had also been detected in drug tests.

Between March and August last year violence had escalated with 18 assaults against staff, 36 against prisoners and 16 fights.

Some had resulted in serious injuries and, in one case, murder.

The report also criticised poor living accommodation after inspectors found dirty cells, broken equipment and laundry facilities that were out of use.

Graffiti and displays of explicit pornography were widespread and some prisoners held in the segregation unit were living in squalid conditions. One prisoner had been left overnight in a cell with a blocked sink and toilet and another in a cell that had been damaged by fire, the report said.

Inspectors said staff too often failed to challenge poor behaviour by prisoners. “We observed prisoners swearing and smoking freely on landings, prisoner cleaners failing to work, without challenge by staff, and pictures contravening the offensive displays policy that were not dealt with.”

Nick Hardwick, the chief inspector of prisons, said the jail had gone through big changes but had not made the progress hoped for.

“We were told of plans for the future but our overriding impression was that it was a prison that just needed to focus on the basics.

“A robust drug strategy, cleaning the prison up, getting prisoners to work on time and some joined-up thinking about their approach to resettling prisoners would be good places to start,” he said.

Michael Spurr, the chief executive of the National Offender Management Service, said: “As the chief inspector has found, Rochester faces a significant challenge from new psychoactive substances, or so called legal highs.

“Staff are determined to tackle this and have already put in place additional security measures, as well as increasing awareness about the dangers and extending support to overcome substance misuse issues.”

Court stays executions indefinitely after wrong drugs delivered to the prison

glossipOklahoma’s highest criminal court has agreed to halt three upcoming executions after the state’s prison system received the wrong drug for a lethal injection this week.

In a unanimous ruling, the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals granted the state’s request and issued indefinite stays of execution for Richard Glossip (left), Benjamin Cole and John Grant.

Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt requested the stays to give his office time to investigate why the Oklahoma Department of Corrections received the wrong drug just hours before Glossip was scheduled to receive his lethal injection on Wednesday.

In its order, the court asked Mr Pruitt’s office to continue to provide the justices updates on any changes to the execution protocol through status reports every 30 days.

Senior Met Cop Pleads Guilty to Possession of Class A Drugs

Paul Cahill
Paul Cahill

A senior gay police officer who was awarded an MBE has pleaded guilty to possession of drugs, Scotland Yard said.

Chief Inspector Paul Cahill, 43, admitted two counts of possession of Class A drugs, one of possession of Class B drug, and one of possession of Class C drug.

He was given a conditional discharge for 12 months and ordered to pay £85 costs, with a £15 victim surcharge, at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London.

A Yard spokesman said: “Chief Inspector Cahill remains suspended from duty. Now that the criminal proceedings are complete the Metropolitan Police will conduct amisconduct investigation.”

Awarded an MBE for services to diversity in policing in 2004, the decorated officer is known for appearing on the cover of Gay Times in full uniform in 1997.

He first joined the police in the 1990s when he said it was ”virtually not acceptable to be gay”.

Cahill was also involved in using gay officers to reassure the public and gather intelligence around Old Compton Street in the aftermath of the Soho nail bombing in 1999.

He was the chairman of the Gay Police Association until it disbanded in April last year and helped secure it public funding in 2002.