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DC Prison Guards Smuggled Cash, Pagers

Ten Washington, D.C., prison guards were charged with conspiracy to smuggle cash and twoway pagers to prisoners in federal indictments unsealed April 31, 2001. The guards, nine of whom work for Corrections Corporation of America, a private company operating the Correctional Treatment Facility in Southeast Washington, were caught in an FBI sting, according to the Washington Post .

The indictments signaled the end of a twoyear federal investigation into corruption at the private prison. Federal prosecutors said the guards accepted hundreds of dollars from an undercover FBI agent posing as a friend of several prisoners. The guards then smuggled the cash and twoway pagers into CTF and delivered them to prisoners.

Unlike previous scandals involving D.C. corrections, these smuggling charges did not involve drugs. When the guards handed over the contraband to certain prisoners, who cooperated in the government sting, the FBI confiscated it. Prisoners are allowed neither cash nor unrestricted electronic communication devices at the facility.

Those charged were Donald Edwards, 44, of Southeast Washington; Henry Hayes, 43, of Temple Hills; Aric Mack, 29, of Capitol Heights; Jonathan Mason, 31, of Oxon Hill; Anthony McLeod, 42, of Temple Hills; Cornelius Minor, 43, of Suitland; Ken Moore, 43, of Southeast Washington; Gary Sherrod, 37, of Northeast Washington; Java Thompson, 37, of Riverdale; and Cory Williams, 31, of Laurel. Edwards worked for the District, and the other indicted guards worked for CCA.

Louise Green, a vice president of the beleaguered CCA, said none of the indicted guards were still employed by the company. Minor and Williams were fired when indicted, she said. Mason, McLeod, and Sherrod were dismissed earlier, and the other four guards resigned, according to Green. "We have a zerotolerance policy," Green claimed. "We have been working with the FBI and U.S. Attorney's office on this matter."

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