JEFF DAVIS PARISH, La. (KLFY)– In an effort to combat the smuggling of drugs and contraband into prisons and jails, Chief Deputy Chris Ivy with the Jeff Davis Parish Sheriff’s Office said equipment such as x-ray machines are used to fight that.

People have been trying to smuggle drugs and contraband into jails and prisons for as long as they’ve been around. Ivy said it’s a problem the Jeff Davis Parish Sheriff’s Office has been combating for years.

“They put it in body cavities, they conceal it in items,” Ivy said.

He said one of the newer ways he’s seen drugs smuggled in is through handwritten letter laced with narcotics.

“They were soaking note paper and envelopes into illegal narcotics like meth and fentanyl and letting it dry,” Ivy said. “And they would write they’re note or letter and send it or mail it in and the inmates were able to get high from chewing the paper.”

He said because of situations like this, notes and letters are tested and copied on new paper to prevent narcotic laced paper from entering the jails. Ivy said it’s prompted his department to evolve their methods of preventing drugs and contraband from being smuggled in for inmates.

“We’ve obtained an x-ray machine like you see at the airport that’s able to x-ray and inmate as he goes through,” Ivy said. “That way you can check under his clothing to see if he’s hiding anything.”

Ivy said although people continue to find ways to try to smuggle contraband and drugs into the jail, one of the main methods they continue to use is closely searching inmates through correctional officers. He said the majority of making sure nothing illegal gets in is relying on correctional officers to properly search them and to make sure they’re not smuggling something in or hiding it.

Deputies with the sheriff’s office warn against trying to smuggle in contraband or drugs as that can be an additional charge for the inmate or the person found guilty of trying to.