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Wife of crime boss Harry Ballinger, and a nasty piece of work in her own right. Her appearance is well trailed - the women watch a news report on TV about her arrest in (536) and Andrew Fry visits Ann to tell her Ruth is to be given special treatment (537). She is brought to Wentworth by two federal policeman (538) who are trying to get information from her about her husband's activities. Ruth is a demanding prisoner: she tells Ann she wants a larger cell, a double bed and new furniture. The women are initially impressed by her tales of high living around the world, but learn to be a little wary of her too. Myra warns her not to deal drugs in Wentworth (541) but Ruth makes a deal with Joan Ferguson in return for providing her with enough heroin to finish off Myra. Ruth gives Myra a taste of what's to come with a cup of coffee laced with acid (543). The federal authorities provide Ann with a file on Ruth: when Joan Ferguson sees the details of Ruth's involvement in child pornography, she goes straight to her cell and bashes her (544). However, Ruth has photos of Joan paying for the drugs and offers the negatives in return for having an escape arranged: Joan insists that Myra must be fixed first. Joan is ready to go ahead with this, and Ruth is just getting ready to inject Myra (548) when the plot is foiled by Daphne and May. Joan duly double-crosses Ruth and accuses her and Lou Kelly of attempting to murder Myra. Meanwhile, Lionel Fellowes' people outside Wentworth give up waiting for Ruth and a group of terrorists take over - they break into Wentworth to free Ruth (549-552). During the siege, Ruth pays back Myra by selecting her as the second person to be shot to put pressure on the police to give them safe transport out of Wentworth. After the terrorists are captured at the airport, Joan has Ruth at gunpoint, but Inspector Grace persuades her not to shoot (552).

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