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Press Release

Corrections Officer Sentenced for Scheme to Smuggle Opioids into Prison for Inmate

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Massachusetts

BOSTON – A corrections officer at the Massachusetts Correctional Institute facility in Norfolk (MCI-Norfolk) was sentenced today in federal court in Boston for a conspiracy to smuggle Suboxone strips into the facility for an inmate.

William Holts, 51, of Pawtucket, R.I., was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Indira Talwani to time served in prison, two years of supervised with the first three months to be served in home confinement, and ordered to pay a fine of $2,000. Holts previously forfeited a 2006 M35 Infinity and $1,250 in cash. In July 2018, Holts pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess a controlled substance.

Beginning around April 30, 2018, Holts advised an inmate, for whom he had smuggled other contraband, that he was willing to smuggle drugs into MCI-Norfolk in exchange for cash. In a series of recorded calls, Holts arranged to meet with a source outside the correctional facility to get the cash and obtain drugs to be smuggled in. Holts agreed to bring in over 100 Suboxone strips in exchange for $2,000 in cash. 

According to court documents, Suboxone is a Class III controlled substance intended to treat heroin addiction, but some abuse the drug to get high. It is coveted contraband in prisons across the nation and particularly in New England. Suboxone strips, which dissolve under the tongue, may be tucked behind envelope seams and stamps.

United States Attorney Andrew E. Lelling; Harold H. Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; and Commissioner Thomas A. Turco III of the Massachusetts Department of Correction made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney Eugenia M. Carris of Lelling’s Public Corruption and Special Prosecutions Unit prosecuted the case.

Updated September 17, 2018

Public Corruption