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Cellphones, shanks and other banned items found during shakedown at prison in east Mississippi

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MERIDIAN, Mississippi — Officials say cellphones, shanks, prepaid credit cards and other contraband items have been found at East Mississippi Correctional Facility.

The Mississippi Department of Corrections says Highway Patrol officers joined prison employees to check for prohibited items Friday at the privately run prison in Lauderdale County.

MDOC says officers also found cellphone chargers, batteries and memory cards; tobacco; cash; metal and wooden clubs; a homemade crack pipe; a bag of white crystal substance; pills; a guitar; jewelry and tattoo material.

Corrections Commissioner Marshall Fisher says investigators will try to determine how the items got into the prison.

Bringing contraband into a prison is punishable by up to 15 years in prison and a $25,000 fine. Conspiracy to bring contraband carries up to a $5,000 fine and five years in prison.

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