Great Britain

Inside Malaga jail where This Is England star Andrew Shim ‘locked up for drug smuggling’ and Brit lag killed himself

THIS Is England star Andrew Shim is reportedly locked up in a jail which was once Spain's most overcrowded and where a Brit inmate killed himself earlier this year.

The popular actor is behind bars after being arrested in Marbella, on the Costa del Sol, on suspicion of drug trafficking, it was reported last night.

The 37 year old has allegedly been on remand at Alhaurin de la Torre prison, near Malaga since October 24 after he was arrested three days previously by National Police, according to the Mirror.

It's the same jail where a British chef facing trial for the murder of an Irish holidaymaker was found dead in his cell in January of this year.

Anthony Gardiner had been on suicide watch following his arrest for the murder of John Pender at an Irish pub in the popular resort of Fuengirola, reported the Mail.

The jail was once rammed with inmates and at one point there were more than 2,000 prisoners banged up inside - despite the fact there are only places for 837.

Stressed guards have also complained that it is very short staffed and the Unions say officers have endured "very abusive behaviour" from those serving their time there.

Prisoners are coupled in cells measuring three by four meters, which contain a work table, a work cabinet and a bunk bed. 

The highly-secure jail has 13 modules with 70 cells each.

Of the 13 modules, one is known as the "respect" module - for those who behave themselves - and another wing is for women which has its own creche.

Among the main differences of being in a normal module and in the "respect" unit is the fact prisoners have the doors of their cells open until late at night

Trusted inmates are also allowed to have access to their cells throughout the day - including siesta time.

They are also given access to recreational activities including theatrical productions and movie shows.

In 2019, the maximum security prison became the first in Spain to allow inmates to communicate with their lawyers via video conference call

Those close to the TV star fear he "thrown away" his promising career.

Once source told the Mirror: "If he has done what he’s accused of – what is he up to?

"He had everything and he’ll have just thrown it all away.”

Shim, from Nottingham, is best known for his role as Milky in Shane Meadows' 2006 film This Is England and subsequent C4 TV series.

He starred alongside Stephen Graham, who has shot to fame as a Hollywood actor, and Vicky McClure, one of the stars of hit BBC cop show Line of Duty.

In one shocking scene during the film, his character was brutally beaten up by Graham's character.

US-born Shim also won plaudits for his performances in Meadows's cult films A Room for Romeo Brass and Dead Man's Shoes.

Shim, who is also an MMA fighter, appeared in the 2015 film Anti-Social.

A spokesman for Spain’s National Police in Malaga told the Mirror: “We can confirm a 37-year-old man was arrested on October 21 last year
for drugs trafficking.”

Spanish Prison Service sources also told the Mirror the same man was still on remand in prison.

He was sent to prison by an investigating judge two days after his arrest, it's claimed.

But it's not clear if he has been formally charged, according to the Mirror.

Formal charges are usually only made in Spain just before a suspect goes to trial.

Prosecutors can submit an indictment after a judge decides there is enough evidence for a trial, but it can can take months or years.

Shim is said to have made a series of “Corona diaries” with famous friends, and to have claimed in one video that his business venture, which involves travelling across Europe, was hit by the Covid pandemic.

He's registered as a director of vehicle company Trackside Hire on Companies House.

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