RC Helis used to smuggle stuff into prisons; how soon until they're UAVs?

From BoingBoing: Someone flew a payload of something into Elmley Prison in Sheerness, Kent, using a RC helicopter. Whatever it was, it's been ingested or hidden, because no one can find it.:

"A spokesman said: 'A remote control helicopter was flown into the grounds of HMP Elmley on December 23.
'As a result of this, a search of the prison grounds and an accommodation block were carried out and nothing was found...'

'Using a mini-helicopter to get contraband into jails is unprecedented. When officers spotted it they nearly fell off their chairs', a prison source told the Sun.

'It could have been drugs or a mobile phone in the package. It is possible it was a dummy run.'

[Chris here: let me be clear that I'm posting this as a warning, not a recommendation. People may use our technology for ill as well as for good, so we should be part of the process of thinking how to stop/spot illegal activity, as well as (inadvertently) enabling it. ]

Views: 653

Comment by Rory Paul on January 16, 2009 at 9:00am
Its just a matter of time before someone decided to build a cargo UAV to send drugs into the US. If they can spend a couple of million building home made subs why not UAVs.
Comment by Jack Crossfire on January 16, 2009 at 11:40am
All U have to do is shoot them down. Makes U wonder what all those guards with guns are getting paid for.
Comment by jonny on January 16, 2009 at 1:03pm
I think we could start by not giving the criminal element any ideas, like telling them they can afford to build cargo uav's!! In my experience, these people are not the smartest and need inspiration and knowledge, so just casualy blurting out hundreds of hours of your own research and that of others to some half-wit that posts a question like " how to start with drones " or " I need flying fifty miles " is tantamount to helping them.
Comment by dionh on January 17, 2009 at 1:03am
Well I'm not sure how safe the prisoners would be with the guards shooting at a moving target.:).One solution would be to use a frequency jammer interrupting the signal to the GPS , that will bring down the UAV fast.

Comment by Gary Mortimer on January 17, 2009 at 2:18am
I say build force fields around the prison and set phasers to stun.

Cessna have been building drug cargo aircraft for years.

Why make it more complex.

Right Im off out to train the Canada geese harder. Amazing what I can get them to lift.


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