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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, June 23, 2022

Federal Inmate and Texas Woman Indicted for Attempt to Smuggle Drugs into Prison by Labeling Packages as “Legal Mail”

FRESNO, Calif. — A federal grand jury returned an indictment today against Anthony Minor, 34, an inmate at the U.S. Penitentiary in Atwater, and Tilisha Morrison, 33, of Irving, Texas, charging them with conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance, conspiracy to provide contraband in a prison, and conspiracy to commit identity fraud, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

Morrison is also charged with three counts of distribution of a controlled substance, three counts of providing contraband in a prison, and three counts of identity fraud.

According to court documents, Minor and Morrison worked together to smuggle narcotics into USP Atwater—the facility where Minor is currently serving a federal prison sentence. At Minor’s direction, Morrison mailed packages containing concealed narcotics to various USP Atwater inmates three times between October 2021 and January 2022. Morrison marked each of the packages as “legal mail” from actual criminal defense attorneys in Dallas. In each package, Morrison included a piece of forged letterhead purportedly from the attorney listed as the sender.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Prisons Special Investigative Services and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica A. Massey is prosecuting the case.

If convicted, defendants face a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables. The charges are only allegations; the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Identity Theft
Updated June 23, 2022