State Grand Jury Issues Indictments Alleging Conspiracies to Smuggle Large Amounts of Contraband into South Carolina Prisons

(COLUMBIA, SC) – Nov. 30, 2018 – South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson announced today that the South Carolina State Grand Jury has issued indictments related to allegations of sophisticated and highly lucrative conspiracies to smuggle large amounts of contraband into the South Carolina prisons.

According to the indictments, prevalent types of contraband include pounds of loose cigarette tobacco, cell phones and cell phone accessories, marijuana, alcoholic beverages, and Synthetic Cannabinoid, also known as “K2”, “Deuce” or “Spice”. Other drugs, such as methamphetamine, suboxone, cocaine, and crack cocaine are also trafficked within the walls of the state prisons.  The indictments allege that the conspiracies were run by inmate leaders who “essentially employ[ed] people both inside and outside the prisons to assist in obtaining and distributing the contraband.”  “Friends, wives, girlfriends, relatives, former inmates, and others”, including staff, were all involved in the smuggling operations, according to the charges.  The indictments contend that “[t]he contraband trade in the prisons drives not only a lucrative black market but also contributes to gang power, gang rivalries, and gang violence among the competing factions within the prison walls.”

The indictments allege four methods by which contraband entered the prison system:  (1) throw-overs, (2) smuggling through prison dairy facilities at Wateree Correctional Institution in Sumter County; (3) smuggling through bread runs to a bakery in Columbia, and (4) smuggling through use of the State House inmate work crews.  The indictments contend that “SCDC’s food distribution network was used against itself to facilitate the contraband trade.”

The indictments collectively contain 69 counts, consisting of 106 charges against 17 defendants.  The investigation is ongoing and anyone with information regarding contraband in SCDC should contact SLED or the Attorney General’s Office.

The charges are as follows:

  • Baraka Nabil Ramos (a/k/a “Christ”)

2018-GS-47-56 (Sumter County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 200 grams or more: 25y and $100,000
  3. Trafficking Marijuana, 10-100 pounds: 1-10y and $10,000
  4. Accessory Before the Fact of Furnishing Contraband to a Prisoner (5 counts): 1-10y and/or $1k -$10K

2018-GS-47-57 (Richland County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy: 5y or up to $5000
  2.  Accessory Before the Fact of Furnishing Contraband to a Prisoner (5 counts): 1-10y and/or $1k-$10K
  • Anthony Jamur Pyatt (a/k/a “MP”)

2018-GS-47-56  (Sumter County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 200 grams or more: 25y and $100,000
  3. Trafficking Marijuana, 10-100 pounds: 1-10y and $10,000
  4. Accessory Before the Fact of Furnishing Contraband to a Prisoner (5 counts): 1-10y and/or $1-$10K
  • Nae’Kwon O’Nore Singleton (a/k/a Tarzan”)

2018-GS-47-56 (Sumter County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Furnishing Contraband to a Prisoner (4 counts): 1-10y and/or $1k – $10K

2018-GS-47-57 (Richland County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana: 0-5y and/or $0-5K
  3. Furnishing Contraband to a Prisoner (5 counts): 1-10y and/or $1k – $10K
  • Alexander Lamont Riley

2018-GS-47-56  (Sumter County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Furnishing Contraband to a Prisoner (4 counts): 1-10y and/or $1k – $10K
  • Stevenson Lamont Bailey

2018-GS-47-56  (Sumter County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Furnishing Contraband to a Prisoner (4 counts) : 1-10y and/or $1-$10K
  • Linwood Leroy Eason, Jr. (a/k/a “LJ”)

2018-GS-47-56  (Sumter County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Furnishing Contraband to a Prisoner (4 counts) : 1-10y and/or $1-$10K
  • Alexandria L. Blair

2018-GS-47-56  (Sumter County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 200 grams or more: 25y and $100,000
  3. Trafficking Marijuana, 10-100 pounds: 1-10y and $10,000
  • India L. McCall, (a/k/a “Kandy”)

2018-GS-47-56  (Sumter County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 200 grams or more: 25y and $100,000
  3. Trafficking Marijuana, 10-100 pounds: 1-10y and $10,000
  • Marcus Anthony Deshner

Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000

  • Floria Shaunte Latoria Lee

Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000

  • Travis Mandell Kemp:

2018-GS-47-58 (Richland County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 10-28 grams: 3-10y & $25K
  3. Furnishing of Contraband to a prisoner: 1-10y and/or $1-$10K
  4. Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana: 0-5y and/or $0-5K
  5. Distribution of Controlled Substance within Proximity of School: 0-10y and/or $0-10k
  6. Trespass or Loitering on or Refusal to Leave State Correction Properties: 0-5y and/or $0-5k

2018-GS-47-59 (Laurens County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 28-100 grams: 7-25y & $50K
  3. Trafficking Cocaine, 10-28 grams: 3-10y and $25K
  4. Possession with Intent to Distribute Schedule IV Controlled Substance or ControlledSubstance Analogue: 0-3y and/or $0-3K
  5. Possession of a Firearm During the Commission of or Attempt to Commit a Violent Crime: 5y
  6. Possession of a Stolen Handgun: 0-5y and/or $0-2K
  7. Furnishing of Contraband to a Prisoner: 1-10y and/or $1-$10K

2018-GS-47-60 (Greenwood County)

  1. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 28-100 grams: 7-25y & $25k
  2. Trafficking Heroin, 4-14 grams: 7-25y and $50K
  3. Possession of Cocaine Base (Crack): 0-3y and/or $0-3K
  • Coley Alonzo Adams:

2018-GS-47-58 (Richland County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 10-28 grams: 3-10y & $25K
  3. Furnishing of Contraband to a Prisoner: 1-10y and/or $1-$10K
  4. Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana: 0-5y and/or $0-5K
  5. Distribution of Controlled Substance within Proximity of School: 0-10y and/or $0-10k
  6. Trespass or Loitering on or Refusal to Leave State Correction Properties: 0-5y and/or $0-5k
  7. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  8. Furnishing of Contraband to a Prisoner: 1-10y and/or $1-$10K

2018-GS-47-60 (Greenwood County)

  1. Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine: 0-15y and/or $25K
  2. Possession with Intent to Distribute Heroin: 0-15y and/or $0-25K
  3. Possession with Intent to Distribute Cocaine Base (Crack): 0-15y and/or $25K
  4. Unlawful Possession of a Firearm by Person Convicted of a Violent Offense: 0-5y and/or $0-2K
  5. Unlawful Carrying of a Handgun: 0-1y and/or $0-1K
  • Keith Everett Brown:

2018-GS-47-58 (Richland County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Furnishing of Contraband to a Prisoner: 1-10y and/or $1-$10K
  3. Possessing Tools or Weapons for Escape: 1-15y
  • Vaquita Eiana Sims:

2018-GS-47-58 (Richland County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  3. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 400 grams or more: 25-30y & $250K
  • Quantis Jamal Pinckney:

2018-GS-47-58 (Richland County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  3. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 400 grams or more: 25-30y & $250K
  • Kimberly Lancaster:

2018-GS-47-58 (Richland County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 10-28 grams
  3. Furnishing of Contraband to a Prisoner: 1-10y and/or $1-$10K
  4. Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana: 0-5y and/or $0-5K
  • Joshua George John:

2018-GS-47-59 (Laurens County)

  1. Criminal Conspiracy:  5y or up to $5000
  2. Trafficking Methamphetamine, 28-100 grams: 7-25y & $50K
  3. Trafficking Cocaine, 10-28 grams: 3-10y and $25K
  4. Possession of a Firearm During the Commission of or Attempt to Commit a Violent Crime: 5y
  5. Possession of a Stolen Handgun: 0-5y and/or $0-2K
  6. Furnishing of Contraband to a Prisoner: 1-10y and/or $1-$10K

The case was investigated by the South Carolina State Grand Jury, which was assisted in this case by a partnership of the Attorney General’s State Grand Jury Division, the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, the South Carolina Department of Corrections’ Division of Police Services, the Richland County Sheriff’s Department, the Fifth Circuit Solicitor’s Office, the Laurens County Sheriff’s Department, and the Eighth Circuit Solicitor’s Office. The cases will be prosecuted by State Grand Jury Division Chief S. Creighton Waters, Assistant Attorney General David Fernandez, and 5th Circuit Assistant Solicitor John Conrad.

Attorney General Wilson stressed that all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until they are proven guilty in a court of law.

You can see the indictments here, here, here, here, and here.

 

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