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Prisoners Run Massive Drug Ring Via Cellphone

Communication technology enabled two kingpins to sell drugs all over Indiana, from their prison cells.

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By Bryan Le

08/23/12

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A couple of inmates in Indianapolis made the most of their mobile phone plans when they managed to oversee a massive state-wide drug operation from inside their cells, via cellphone. From separate prisons, ringleader Oscar Perez and partner Justin Addler allegedly used mobile phones smuggled in by guards to arrange for the wholesale purchase of heroin from Chicago and meth from California and distribute the drugs all across Indiana. The sly duo were tele-present throughout the schemes, with Addler once reportedly conference calling in to a drug deal where 20 grams of heroin were sold for $2,500 at a truck stop. It took 300 FBI agents fanning out over the entire state to uncover the network of 40 conspirators, about 17 of whom faced trial yesterday. As far as the prison guards who permitted the cellphones to infiltrate the prisons in the first place—only one of whom has been formally charged—the Indiana Department of Correction has issued a statement apologizing for their behavior. "The actions of the small number of any IDOC correctional employees who may have facilitated these illegal activities brings dishonor to them and tarnishes the good name and professionalism of the vast majority of IDOC employees," the statement said.

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