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The Department of Correctional Services (DCS) is currently up in arms over a video doing its rounds on social media, showcasing the correctional services in a negative light.
In a statement, the DCS explains it is aware of the videos making rounds on social media, depicting three inmates assaulting an official and an inmate carrying a gun and a knife. As realistic as these videos might seem, the government entity explains, “DCS can categorically state that this is all an act and nothing closer to reality.”
In addition, the DCS explains these videos contravene Section 124 of the Correctional Services Act, Act 11 of 1998, which states, “any unauthorised person who wears or uses the departmental uniform, distinctive badge or insignia of the Department or of a custody official or anything deceptively resembling them is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine or, in default of payment, to imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months or to such imprisonment without the option of a fine or both.”
Moreover, Section 125 proceeds to mention that any person masquerading as a correctional or custody official is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine or, in default of payment, to imprisonment for a period not exceeding two years or to such imprisonment without the option of a fine.
With this in mind, the DCS says, “The Department of Correctional Services never granted any permission for the production of these videos; hence the resolve to embark on legal processes in dealing with those behind them. There are processes in place for creative artists to approach the Department of Correctional Services for the utilisation of our uniform or property. These requests are processed internally and can only be approved by the National Commissioner and such work must be in the interests of justice and rehabilitation of inmates.”
Delving further into the seriousness of the matter, the Department emphasises the videos are an attack on Correctional Services and also undermines the State’s authority. “We view this in a very serious light, as it may have serious consequences for our officials and inmates. The person behind the videos has been identified and the Department is engaging with the SAPS for the law to take its course.”
The videos can be viewed here:
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