The National Party are asking how a gang member in Rimutaka Prison was able to film videos of himself getting Mongrel Mob tattoos in jail and chanting Mob slogans and obscenities with other prison inmates in a cell.
The videos were uploaded to YouTube under an account called Mob Music. It features music videos by a Rotorua gang member Tihema Nuttall – who calls himself Temm Dogg - a repeat offender who has been in and out of jail for offences including burglaries and assault.
Prisoners are not allowed mobile phones and items such as tattooing guns are banned.
Prisoners are also supposed to have only limited access to the internet and jails have cellphone blocking technology.
Over the past three weeks several videos have been loaded which appear to have been filmed in jail.
One video posted two weeks ago shows a prisoner getting a tattoo from another inmate.
Another posted a week ago shows inmates listening to music while barking and shouting expletives and Mob slogans including "sieg f****ing heil".
National Party corrections spokesman David Bennett asked Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis about the incidents in Parliament today.
At the same time, the Corrections Department issued a statement saying it became aware of the video early on Tuesday morning, four prisoners involved identified and the cellphone used had been found. The tattoo gun had been found on routine searches the day before.
Neil Beales, the chief custodial officer at the Ministry of Corrections, said the prisoners have been moved and charged with misconduct.
"We appreciate that any images of prisoners available online will be of particular concern to the victims of offending. We are making contact with YouTube and asking for the content to be removed."
Asked by David Bennett whether corrections officers were involved in smuggling in the contraband, Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis said it would be unacceptable if that was the case.
"I have high expectations of their behaviour. I have no tolerance for corrections officers who are found to be abusing their position in prisons. They endanger themselves and their peers."
He said legislation currently going through Parliament would make it illegal for prisoners to get or give tattoos. He had also asked officials to look at a tattoo removal programme.
"Some tattoos, in particular gang patches, can have an impact on the ability for some prisoners to transition back into communities."
Beales said a review into the incident was underway. There were measures aimed at preventing contraband entry, and some prisoners placed significant pressure on families and associates to try to deliver banned items.
If prisoners were found guilty of getting contraband, sanctions included loss of privileges such as access to hobbies, telephone calls or visits, forfeiture of earnings or confinement to their cells.
Nuttall had previously served time in the early 2010s, reoffended within two months of being released and was sentenced to a further 15 months in 2013.
The most recent upload prior to the recent spate was seven months ago - a music video called Under Suspicion.
Prior to that the account featured Temm Dogg videos with names including Most Wanted, Red, Crime Life, Mobligated and Rob U2.