December 9, 2022

Australian prisoners become celebrities on social media by using smuggled phones to gain exposure on the internet behind bars.

The discovery that inmates are using social media in Australian prisons to share parts of their prison life with a young online audience has sparked an investigation by Corrective Services NSW.

Inmates are not allowed to have or use cell phones in corrective centers across Australia, but that doesn’t stop cons from posting on social media platforms like TikTok.

Videos glorifying violence, crime and prison life have made their way to the media, alongside other seemingly harmless rap and dance videos.

Inmates can have their sentences extended to two years if they are caught taking or smuggling phones into prison.

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Drill rapper ‘Snoee Badman’ used a smuggled prison phone and social media to gain more audience for his rapping while behind bars

Former wakeboarder Kyle Richardson had used a smuggled cell phone to share TikTok dances with the outside world after being jailed after a car accident that seriously injured his then 18-year-old girlfriend in 2020

Inmate Kyle Richardson, who has called himself the “Prince of Parklea,” amassed thousands of followers on TikTok by posting videos of himself dancing in his prison green, the reported Daily Telegram.

Kyle Richardson did not try to hide his identity or environment in his viral videos, with his cell, uniform, tattoos and face all clearly visible.

In a short time, the prisoner gathered some 11,000 followers with his videos, which were shown on hundreds of thousands of phone screens.

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He was also active on other social media accounts while in prison.

His account has now been deleted after Corrective Services NSW confirmed that the videos were known to them.

One of his videos was captioned, “When you see your friends partying and pulling tens, but you went away for a bit (sic).”

The 21-year-old ‘went off’ before a high-speed, MDMA-powered crash on Sydney’s M1 that seriously injured his then 18-year-old girlfriend in 2020.

By sharing TikTok dances in his cell and jail cell, Kyle Richardson gained thousands of followers on social media, but his accounts are now gone

In his cell (pictured) Snoee Badman used voice recording applications and TikTok to produce and share his raps

Former inmate and rapper Snoee Badman used a smuggled cell phone to film himself rapping in his prison cell.

One of the drill rapper’s videos, showing him in a Long Bay cell, has been viewed more than 62,000 times on TikTok.

Another one titled “Bars Behind Bars” has 42,000 views.

In a podcast, the rapper said he had a few phones during his “brick” — a 10-year sentence — and used a voice recording app to record an entire rap album.

Dogs and search teams are trained to track down cell phones before an inmate enters the prison, but many still end up in the hands of inmates.

Often, smaller smuggled phones in the rectum are smuggled into prisons, a prison source said.

The presence of mobile phones in prisons across Australia puts law enforcement officers at risk, allows criminals to communicate from behind bars and conduct illegal operations and influence the country’s youth online.

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Corrective Services NSW has been testing cell phone jammers at the Lithgow and Goulburn correctional centers and continues to investigate how best to prevent phones from entering prison.

“Corrective Services NSW takes a zero-tolerance approach to contraband and is at the forefront of developing and implementing technologies to combat the extraordinary efforts of inmates to smuggle contraband,” a Corrective Services spokeswoman said.

Tara Moriarty, NSW’s shadow corrections minister, said more prisons are needed to introduce mobile jamming technology.

“It’s ridiculous that it hasn’t expanded yet,” she told the Saturday Telegraph.

“It’s one thing to make videos on social media, but what else are they doing with these phones.”