Inmates placing preorders for cigarettes before state lifts smoke ban in Mississippi prisons on Feb. 1

Published 6:53 am Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Some inmates are placing pre-orders for cigarettes before Mississippi lifts its smoke ban in prisons on Feb. 1.

According to WLBT News in Jackson, some inmates are complaining of price gouging on cigarettes and other tobacco products.

Mississippi Department of Corrections officials say the are looking into a complaint of price-gouging, adding that cigarettes are not supposed to be sold beyond market prices.

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Despite claims of price gouging and complaints that lifting the smoke ban makes the environment less healthy, officials point out that prisoners are already smoking and using smokeless tobacco and that lifting the smoke ban will cut down on contraband and gangs using contraband to extort inmates.

Inmates have been known to charge up to $500 a pound for smuggled tobacco products, officials say, taking advantage of inmates and inmates’ families, who often have to foot the bill by adding money to their family members’ accounts.
As for claims of price-gouging, Honeycut said he would investigate. He said