Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Drugs made into paste and painted into books to smuggle into jail

FIVE people, including three New Jersey inmates, were arrested in connection with a conspiracy to use children's colouring book pages to smuggle drugs into a county jail, WPVI-TV reported.
In mid-February, colouring book pictures painted an orange-yellow color began arriving at the Cape May County Correctional Facility. According to The Philadelphia Inquirer, the pictures were often addressed, "To Daddy".
Correctional officers had received a tip about a conspiracy to smuggle drugs into facility through the mail, and tests on the pictures revealed the orange-yellow substance was Suboxone, a drug used to wean addicts off  opiates. The drug had been dissolved into a paste and painted onto the coloring book pages so inmates could lick the substance to get high.
Taking Suboxone without a doctor's direction can be dangerous.
"When it's first used, first being administered, you have to almost daily monitor that because it can cause breathing problems and death," Cape May County Sheriff Gary Schaffer said, according to WPVI-TV.

Three inmates - Zachary Hirsh, Charles Markham and Paul Scipione - were charged with conspiracy to commit a crime, while Debbie Longo, the mother of one of the inmates, was charged with intent to distribute a controlled dangerous substance.
Authorities are still searching for a third person in connection with the conspiracy.
Officials said the scheme was unlike any they had ever uncovered and are warning correction officers across the country to be alert for similar plots.
"Thirty-eight years in law enforcement, and I've done narcotic work, undercover narcotics myself, and I've never seen anything like this," Sheriff Schaffer said.

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