Prison guard caught with drugs in Saughton jail car park

A prison officer is facing a jail sentence after he was caught with bags of cocaine and cannabis at HMP Edinburgh.

Sunday, 4th July 2021, 4:09 pm
Updated Sunday, 4th July 2021, 4:09 pm

David Lee Smith, 51, was sitting in his car when police officers swooped on him following a tip off.

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Officers found bags of cocaine along with wraps of cannabis and 181 street Valium tablets called Etizolam.

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David Lee Smith. Picture: JPIMedia

The prison warder was found to have cocaine worth £300 and cannabis worth more than £600 when his vehicle was searched.

Smith, from Bo’ness, near Falkirk, was arrested and charged and spent three nights in custody before appearing on petition at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

Smith was back in the dock at the Capital court on Friday where he pleaded guilty to three charges of possessing quantities of Class A, B and C drugs.

A plea of not guilty to intending to take cocaine into the prison was accepted by the Crown.

Prosecutor Jennifer McLaren told the court: “At the time of the offence the accused was a serving prison officer at HMP Edinburgh.

“Due to intelligence received police officers had cause to approach the accused as he sat in his vehicle at around 7.30am on September 25 last year.

“They identified themselves as police officers and the accused made no reply.

“It was noted that he was holding a blue wrap which later was confirmed as cocaine - approximately 5.7 grams.

“This was taken from the accused and he was detained there and the vehicle was searched.

“Further cling film wraps containing cannabis were recovered from the driver’s door pocket - approximately 73.15 grams.

“A tub containing a powder material, later confirmed as cocaine, weighing roughly 1.06 grams [was also found].

“There was a further bag containing a wrap of cannabis and 181 Etizolam tablets.”

The fiscal said the total amount of cocaine found in Smith’s car was worth £300 while the cannabis amounted to £625.

The Etizolam tablets were said to be worth £72.

Defence agent Ms Wallace said she would reserve her mitigation to the sentencing hearing.

Sheriff Douglas Keir described the offence as “a serious matter” but said he would defer sentence to August for criminal justice social work reports to be prepared.

Smith pleaded guilty to possessing quantities of cocaine, cannabis and Etizolam at HMP Edinburgh, Stenhouse Road, Edinburgh, on September 25 last year.

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