Pigeon detained in prison for dodgy contents of tiny backpack

Pigeon detained in prison for dodgy contents of tiny backpack

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It sounds almost too outlandish for a prison drama, but hey, sometimes real life is stranger than fiction: a pigeon carrying a tiny backpack of drugs has been seized by prison officers in Canada.

Guards at Pacific Institution in British Columbia spotted the bird at the facility on 29 December near one of its recreation yards.

John Randle, president of the Pacific Region for Union of Canadian Correctional Officers, told Global News: “A pigeon was located at Pacific Institution inside the walls, and it appeared to have a small package – sort of like a backpack – attached to it.

“It was spotted by correctional officers, I believe, and security intelligence officers when the officers were doing their standard patrols around and throughout the unit and institution. That’s when they initially spotted the bird with the package on it.”

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Rather than "coo-caine" (sorry), the bird was carrying crystal meth. Clearly, its thwarted recipient hoped the pigeon wouldn't be the only one flying high...

Randle explained that apprehending the tiny drug mule wasn't the easiest task in the world, saying: "I believe there was some creative work – because the bird moved around quite a bit – in order to track it and capture it.

“It’s almost like the inmates and criminals are going back in time and using older technology."

Such bizarre strategies to smuggle in contraband or break any other prison rule are, weirdly, not unusual. One previous incident at Pacific Institution concerned a bow and arrow, while a convicted murderer managed to escape a Las Vegas prison using a cardboard dummy and battery acid.

Randle went on to say the drug problem at prisons across Canada is “growing on a daily basis” and that “this pigeon thing” certainly “adds a new element” to that.

Patrols at the site have increased to keep an eye out for any future supply drops, while a joint investigation into the “pigeon thing” has been launched by Canada’s correctional service and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

Oh, and the pigeon was released once its backpack was taken off, of course.

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