Selling Heroin in Prison
Sponsored adThis sponsor paid to have this advertisement placed in this section.
In prisons nationwide, heroin is a big commodity. Prisoners use a wide range of tactics to smuggle drugs inside—from visitors, to warehouses, to the postal system, to manipulating guards. And once it's in, they can make big bucks selling it. "Once you get the chiva in you have to break it down before you get rid of it," one prisoner tells The Fix. "It's not a complicated process but you have to be discreet. The dope is usually brought in by balloons—one gram of heroin per balloon. So once you have the balloons you get to work. One gram is divided into 12 $100 papers. It's best to use a tinfoil or wax like paper to wrap the heroin in when you break it down." If a prisoner smuggles in 3 grams of Mexican black tar heroin, which goes for about $75 a gram on he street, he can get 36 $100 pieces out of it—that's a total of $3,600 back on a $225 investment. "That is why people smuggle drugs into prison," says the prisoner, "The money is good." To pay for the dope, prisoners usually do a "'send out.' That is where they send $100 off their books [commissary account] to an address of my choosing," the prisoner tells us, "Or they can do a 'send in,' where they get their people to put the money on my account. The last way is to do a 'street to street,' where they get their people to send money to my people on the street." When there's this much money to be made, prison fences aren't enough to stop the business thriving.