Padilla introduces “tougher” cellphone bill, eschews felony designation

Feb 4th, 2011 | By | Category: Cell phones
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XREF:  Manson busted with another cellphone; California prison guards union called main obstacle to keeping cellphones away from inmates

Alex Padilla introduces tougher prison cell phone bill

State Sen. Alex Padilla, D-Los Angeles, said Thursday he’s introducing legislation to impose criminal penalties on those who smuggle cell phones into prisons, a day after it was revealed that prison authorities had found a second phone in the possession of mass murder Charles Manson.

Last year, then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed a Padilla bill on contraband prison phones, saying it wasn’t tough enough. Padilla reintroduced that bill again this year, but said Thursday he’s submitting a second bill that provides tougher penalties.

“Last year more than 10,000 cell phones were confiscated in California prisons,” Padilla said, adding that his new measure, Senate Bill 26, will target both the inmate and anyone who smuggles a cell phone to an inmate.

“The bill includes heavy fines and jail time for smugglers; and non-restorable loss of time credit and additional prison time for inmates caught with cell phones,” he added.

Smuggling by a prison employee or non-employee would be a misdemeanor with a fine of up to $5,000 per device. A non-employee with a previous smuggling conviction could be jailed for a second offense. with jail terms for subsequent offense. A prison employee caught smuggling a phone….(Full text at Sacramento Bee)

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