Portland prisoner had phones in cell

A FRAUDSTER serving a nine-year jail term at the HMP The Verne on Portland had mobile phones in his cell.

Amir Ali Akhlaghi, 44, admitted a charge of possessing a specified article within a prison without authority.

Prosecutor David Reid told Dorchester Crown Court that Iranian-born Akhlaghi was sentenced to nine years in prison in September last year for a number of fraud offences and in April this year was on the induction wing at the Verne.

He said a fellow inmate reported Akhlaghi, who enjoyed enhanced status at the prison and had a key to his own cell, to the prison authorities after they had agreed a deal for the defendant to sell him a mobile phone for £500 but he did not provide the phone.

Prison officers searched the Akhlaghi’s cell and in a locker wrapped in a pair of jeans they found two Blackberry phones, a number of SIM cards and two USB cables.

Mr Reid said when the defendant was asked about the items he replied: “I have no idea, someone must have put them there.”

Akhlaghi was arrested but later made a full admission.

The case was adjourned for enquiries into the defendant’s status in the country.

When it resumed at Bournemouth Crown Court Aklaghi’s representative Richard Griffiths said his client had no intention of fighting deportation proceedings to send him back to Iran at the end of his sentence.

For the mobile phone offence Judge Roger Jarvis imposed a 16-week jail term, to be served consecutive to the sentence he is already serving.

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