Prison Guard Corruption
According to Broward criminal lawyer William Moore, the corruption of prison guards has been a problem since modern prisons were developed (and probably before that — it is not hard to imagine the keeper of the king’s prisoners accepting bribes in exchange for certain favors for the prisoner). Guards are individuals charged with difficult, stressful jobs who are paid relatively little for their services. They must maintain order in the prison among an unhappy group of people, most of whom have serious criminal history and many of whom may have affiliations with gangs, notes Fort Lauderdale criminal lawyer Moore.
Prison guards have access to the outside world and are the only people besides other prisoners that the inmates see and speak to on a daily basis. Some inmates have access to significant funds outside of the walls of the prison. Others have contacts — other gang members, girlfriends or wives, friends, or others who have some motivation to help the detained person, says Fort Lauderdale criminal attorney Moore. Sometimes, the inmates have a drug addiction they need to feed. Other times, they want drugs to numb the boredom and general experience of prison. Having outside contacts capable of introducing contraband into the prison may also bring with it a level of prestige within the inmate hierarchy.
Few prison guards ever accept money in exchange for bringing contraband — drugs, cell phones, or other items — into the prisons. However, a small number do. Last year, numerous former guards at Glade Correctional Institute were caught in a corruption probe directed by the FBI. Inmates had complained that the prison was corrupt and that it was possible to obtain anything with the assistance of guards. Six employees were charged by the state with conspiracy, introducing contraband into a prison, and bribery. Sixteen individuals, of whom 11 were prison guards, also pleaded guilty to federal cocaine charges related to a cocaine trafficking ring running from Fort Lauderdale to the Glades institution.