A DRONE has been captured on CCTV for the first time dropping contraband into a maximum security NSW prison.
A member of the public alerted prison authorities on Monday evening to the presence of the drone near Lithgow Correctional Centre.
The following morning, officers conducted raids at the jail and found an inmate with two packages concealed in his clothing that contained 403 steroid capsules, Corrections Minister David Elliott said in a statement on Thursday.
Mr Elliot said drones pose a threat to the safety and security of guards and prisons.
"I will be looking at what further safeguards can be put in place to further restrict the use of drones and other aircraft in the vicinity of prisons," the minister said.
But opposition police spokesman Guy Zangari argued Mr Elliot has done little to address the issue of drones.
"He is now so inept in his portfolio he is relying on members of the public to provide tip-offs to seize contraband," the Labor MP said in a statement.
Authorities have conducted a series of searches across NSW prisons this year in an attempt to stymie the flow of contraband being smuggled in.
Between January and August, 67,000 visitor searches in the state's prisons busted more than 550 people attempting to smuggle in illegal goods.
Some 154 people were charged while 400 visitors were denied entry into 36 jails. Confiscated goods included 148 grams of methamphetamine, 392g of marijuana, 33 weapons, and 422 syringes.
A sweep of 15 NSW prisons in September resulted in a stash of mobile phones, seven litres of prison brew and 23 improvised weapons being seized.