Most prisoners queue for public phones on landings, which can trigger violence or fuel demand for illicit mobiles

The government is to spend £7m on installing in-cell telephones in prisons across England and Wales as part of a drive to improve rehabilitation and stem the flow of illegal mobiles, the justice secretary, David Gauke, is to announce.

The technology is already in place at 20 jails and plans are under way to extend the scheme to another 20 over the next two years, it is understood.

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