A homemade greeting card was used to try to smuggle drugs into Lithgow Correctional Centre.
Corrective Services NSW states officers are increasingly finding strips of the prescription drug buprenorphine inside cards delivered to prison inmates across the network.
The five "bupe strips", as they are known, were inside a handmade card addressed to an inmate at Lithgow Correctional Centre. It was intercepted by staff.
'Bupe' is a prescription heroin-replacement and can be worth about $200 per strip in a maximum-security centre.
Officers at Silverwater Women's Correctional Centre were suspicious of a 'Thinking of You' card addressed to an inmate after noticing its spine was slightly detached.
Governor Paula Quarrie said intelligence officers located 12 buprenorphine strips, weighing 0.6g, after pulling away the inner paper from the cardboard backing.
"Someone was thinking of this inmate in completely the wrong way," Ms Quarrie said.
"My staff did a great job to locate these drugs before they could get into the wrong hands."
There were about 100 incidents last year of contraband found in letters, cards, parcels or other mail sent to inmates. Buprenorphine strips were the most common item of contraband seized.
Commissioner Peter Severin praised staff for their continued vigilance.
"It's important that inmates stay in touch with families and friends through letters but this kind of behaviour jeopardises their chances of rehabilitation," Mr Severin said.
Other recent contraband finds in inmate mail include five bupe strips secreted behind a tracking sticker on an Express Post envelope sent to an inmate at Long Bay Correctional Complex; 12 bupe stripes were located in the side seams of an Express Post envelope sent to an inmate at Dillwynia Correctional Centre; and two bupe strips were located in an envelope sent to an inmate at Dillwynia Correctional Centre.
The sender's name and return address were fake in the majority of cases.
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