The two British women accused of drug trafficking £1.5 million worth of cocaine have been taken to an infamous Peruvian jail which houses some of the country's most dangerous killers.

Melissa Reid and Michaella McCollum Connolly have spent their first night in the notorious prison – a former army barracks – surrounded by killers, drug dealers and terrorists.

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Melissa Reid and Michaella McCollum Connolly have spent their first night in jail

Former prisoners say bullying and prostitution as a form of survival are common, while the charity Prisoners Abroad said people in Peru’s jails often had to sleep on floors, in corridors or in toilet areas because of overcrowding in prisons, with many at 200 per cent over capacity.

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The glum looking girls have been taken to the notorious prison

"Many have lost teeth due to absolutely no nutrition within the meagre food portions given," a report by the charity said.

"Access to clean and drinkable water is rare within Peruvian prisons and one has no other choice but to buy bottled water at inflated prices."

Reid and McCollum Connolly had expected to be taken to a modern jail, where most foreigners involved in drugs trafficking are locked up, the Mirror reported.

The 20-year-old women, who claim they were forced to carry the drugs by an armed gang who threatened their family members, were taken to the Virgen de Fatima jail after being warned they could now spend up to three years in prison awaiting trial.

However, officials have now claimed the women confessed to drug officers that they knew they had drugs in their suitcases.

A court spokesman said: “Although they claimed they had received threats to make them take the drugs, they admitted they knew drugs were in their luggage and didn’t warn the authorities.

“For that reason and for others relating to flight risk and their family and work ties to Peru, they were remanded in custody."

The pair now face a maximum prison sentence of 15 years if convicted, a Peruvian prosecutor's office in Callao, near Lima, has said.

McCollum's lawyer Peter Madden said the women were effectively beginning a prison sentence, as they were led away yesterday for an unknown amount of time for their trial.

Madden has maintained his client will plead not guilty and described the conditions she is being held in as "unacceptable".

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  • Melissa Reid, Michaella McCollum Connolly, Peter Madden

    Ireland's Michaella McCollum Connolly, left, Scotland's Melissa Reid, second from the left, and British lawyer Peter Madden representing Connolly, talk to a translator during their hearing at court in Callao, Peru, Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Prosecutors formally levied drug-trafficking charges on Tuesday against Reid and Connolly who were arrested this month trying to depart Peru with 24 pounds of cocaine in their luggage. The man at right is an unidentified translator. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Melissa Reid, Michaella McCollum Connolly

    Michaella McCollum Connolly, of Ireland, left, and Melissa Reid, of Scotland, center, attend their hearing at court in Callao, Peru, Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Prosecutors formally levied drug-trafficking charges on Tuesday against Reid and Connolly who were arrested this month trying to depart Peru with 24 pounds of cocaine in their luggage. The man at right is an unidentified translator. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Melissa Reid, Michaella McCollum Connolly

    Michaella McCollum Connolly, right, and Melissa Reid are escorted by police as they arrive to court for their hearing in Callao, Peru, Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Prosecutors formally levied drug-trafficking charges on Tuesday against Reid, of Scotland, and Connolly, of Ireland, who were arrested this month trying to depart Peru with 24 pounds of cocaine in their luggage. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Melissa Reid

    Melissa Reid, of Scotland, smiles as she arrivals to court for her hearing in Callao, Peru, Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Prosecutors formally levied drug-trafficking charges on Tuesday against Reid and Michaella McCollum Connollyand, of Ireland, who were arrested this month trying to depart Peru with 24 pounds of cocaine in their luggage. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Melissa Reid, Michaella McCollum Connolly

    Michaella McCollum Connolly, of Ireland, left, and Melissa Reid, of Scotland, center, listen to a translator during their hearing at court in Callao, Peru, Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Prosecutors formally levied drug-trafficking charges on Tuesday against Reid and Connolly who were arrested this month trying to depart Peru with 24 pounds of cocaine in their luggage. The man at right is an unidentified translator. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Melissa Reid, Michaella McCollum Connolly

    Police escort Michaella McCollum Connolly, of Ireland, left, and Melissa Reid, of Britain, in handcuffs as they are moved from the National Police anti-drug headquarters to a court to be formally charged for drug trafficking in Lima, Peru, Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013. Video emerged showing Reid and Connolly being nervously interrogated after their Aug. 6 detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. In the video, Reid says she was forced to take "these bags" in her luggage. She says she didn't know there were drugs inside them. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Michaella McCollum Connolly

    Michaella McCollum Connolly, of Ireland, right, sits inside a police car as she is moved from the National Police Anti-drug headquarters to a court where she will be formally charged for drug trafficking in Lima, Peru, Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013. Video emerged showing Connolly and her travel partner being nervously interrogated after their Aug. 6 detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Melissa Reid

    Melissa Reid, of Britain, sits inside of police car as she is moved from the National Police anti-drug headquarters to a court where she will be formally charged for drug trafficking in Lima, Peru, Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013. Video emerged showing Reid and her travel partner being nervously interrogated after their Aug. 6 detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. In the video, Reid says she was forced to take "these bags" in her luggage. She says she didn't know there were drugs inside them. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Michaella McCollum Connolly

    Michaella McCollum Connolly, of Ireland, is escorted in handcuffs into a car by police as she leaves the National Police anti-drug headquarters before being driven to a court where she will be formally charged for drug trafficking in Lima, Peru, Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013. Video emerged showing Connolly and her travel partner being nervously interrogated after their Aug. 6 detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Melissa Reid, Michaella McCollum Connolly

    Police escort Michaella McCollum Connolly, of Ireland, front left, and Melissa Reid, of Britain, in handcuffs as they are moved from the National Police anti-drug headquarters to a court to be formally charged for drug trafficking in Lima, Peru, Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013. Video emerged showing Reid and Connolly being nervously interrogated after their Aug. 6 detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. In the video, Reid says she was forced to take "these bags" in her luggage. She says she didn't know there were drugs inside them. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Melissa Reid

    Police escort Melissa Reid, of Britain, left, from the National Police anti-drug headquarters to a court to be formally charged for drug trafficking in Lima, Peru, Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013. Video emerged showing Reid and her travel partner being nervously interrogated after their Aug. 6 detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. In the video, Reid says she was forced to take "these bags" in her luggage. She says she didn't know there were drugs inside them. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • William Reid

    William Reid, father of Melissa Reid, of Britain, leaves the National Police anti-drug headquarters where his daughter and her travel companion Michaella McCollum Connolly, of Ireland, are being held after their detention in Lima, Peru, Monday, Aug. 19, 2013. Video emerged showing the two women being nervously interrogated after their Aug. 6 detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. In the video, Reid says she was forced to take "these bags" in her luggage. She says she didn't know there were drugs inside them. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Peter Madden, Keith McCollum Connolly

    The brother of suspected drug smuggler Michaella McCollum Connolly, Keith, right, and her lawyer Peter Madden, second from the left, leave the National Police anti-drug headquarters where Michaella and her travel partner Melissa Reid, are being held, in Lima, Peru, Monday, Aug. 19, 2013. Video emerged showing the two women being interrogated after their Aug. 6 detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. In the video, Reid says she was forced to take "these bags" in her luggage. She says she didn't know there were drugs inside them. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Peter Madden

    British lawyer Peter Madden, right, who is representing Michaella McCollum Connolly, of Ireland, speaks to the media outside the National Police anti-drug headquarters where Connolly and Melissa Reid, of Britain, are being held after their detention in Lima, Peru, Friday, Aug. 16, 2013. Video emerged showing the two women being nervously interrogated after their Aug. 6 detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. In the video, Reid says she was forced to take "these bags" in her luggage. She says she didn't know there were drugs inside them. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • Peter Madden, Keith McCollum Connolly

    The brother of suspected drug smuggler Michaella McCollum Connolly, Keith, right, and her lawyer Peter Madden, second from the left, leave the National Police anti-drug headquarters where Michaella and her travel partner Melissa Reid, are being held, in Lima, Peru, Monday, Aug. 19, 2013. Video emerged showing the two women being interrogated after their Aug. 6 detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. In the video, Reid says she was forced to take "these bags" in her luggage. She says she didn't know there were drugs inside them. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • A police officer walks past the National Police anti-drug headquarters where Michaella McCollum Connolly, of Ireland, and Melissa Reid, of Britain, are held after their detention in Lima, Peru, Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2013. Video emerged showing the two women being nervously interrogated after their detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. In the video, Reid says she was forced to take "these bags" in her luggage. She says she didn't know there were drugs inside them. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this Aug. 6, 2013 photo released by Peru's National police, food packages allegedly containing cocaine and found in the luggage of Michaella McCollum Connolly, from Ireland, and Melissa Reid, from Britain, lay on a table after the women were detained at the airport in Lima, Peru. Video emerged showing the two women being nervously interrogated after their detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. In the video, Reid says she was forced to take "these bags" in her luggage. She says she didn't know there were drugs inside them. (AP Photo/Peru's National Police)

  • In this Aug. 6, 2013 photo provided by Peru's National Police, Michaella McCollum Connolly, of Ireland, left, and Melissa Reid, of Britain, stand behind their luggage after being detained at the airport in Lima, Peru. Video emerged showing the two women being nervously interrogated after their detention at Lima's airport for allegedly trying to smuggle cocaine on a flight to Spain. In the video, Reid says she was forced to take "these bags" in her luggage. She says she didn't know there were drugs inside them. (AP Photo/Peru's National Police)