The emergency and lockdown at Canberra's prison has ended 24 hours sooner than expected after "a full and systematic search" was completed.
The intensive search did not turn up a firearm. ACT Corrections executive director Jon Peach last week speculated a firearm would be "the worse case scenario" from a recent breach in the jail's security.
However, the search did find "a number of contraband items of minor concern", according to ACT Corrections.
The "minor items" found acreoss the five days of searching included syringes, knives, needles, mobile phones, USBs and "items of drug paraphernalia including vials of steroids".
The emergency had been called last week and then extended through the weekend after a hole was found cut in the outer perimeter fence and a package, the content of which are still undisclosed, thrown into the prison yard.
The immediate concern by prison staff was that other packages of contraband had been collected by inmates before the breach was discovered.
"There was no credible intelligence to suggest there was a firearm in prison but we always base things on the worst case scenario," Mr Peach said.
Every time we find one way of stopping it [contraband], the detainees then creatively try to find another way.ACT Corrections executive director Jon Peach
The hole had been cut on Sunday, November 3. A perimeter alarm sounded about 5pm that day but was not investigated. The emergency was called on Wednesday.
Mr Peach was now satisfied there was no elevated risk to staff, detainees or visitors.
Female detainees were prioritised during the weekend search "with a limited [search] regime within their accommodation area", while a full search of the rest of the facility continued.
A number of prisoners were strip-searched during the prison lockdown.
Normal operations at the prison will now resume and prisoners will be permitted to see visitors from Wednesday, which is customary procedure.
A spokesperson for the Justice and Community Safety directorate said that "an internal management review was launched last week and is now under way."
ACT police seized the package of contraband which was thrown over the prison fence and it is subject to a forensic investigation.
Mr Peach said he wasn't at all surprised by the amount of items found in the intensive search.
"I think what this shows is the extraordinary lengths that people will go to introduce contraband into the Alexander Maconochie Centre.
"Every time we find one way of stopping it, the detainees then creatively try to find another way."
ACT Corrections Minister Shane Rattenbury described the introduction of contraband into prison as a form of "arms race" that all jurisdictions face.
"We've made some significant investments [in contraband detection] ... and right now we are looking at new technology which is becoming available."
The prospect of mobile phone jamming now looms as a distinct possibility.