Former Correctional officer Sentenced to 2 years in Jail for smuggling Fentanyl into Detention Centers in Phoenix

Phoenix, AZ: According to a statement released by the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office on Thursday, a former correctional officer in Phoenix found guilty of bringing drugs into the detention center where he worked and was sentenced to two years in prison for his actions.

According to the prosecution, Andres Salazar, who was 28 years old at the time, was taken into custody in November 2022 as he was arriving for work at the Lower Buckeye Jail. He was found to be in possession of more than one hundred fentanyl pills and close to sixty grams of methamphetamine.

Since the month of October 2019, Salazar had been officially employed by the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office. Prior to his arrest, he had been the subject of an inquiry for more than a month.

In December, he entered a guilty plea to a felony count of soliciting to undertake the promotion of contraband within the prison system.

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A poisonous substance known as fentanyl is making its way into every nook and cranny of Maricopa County. In a statement, County Attorney Rachel Mitchell emphasized how vitally crucial it is for our correctional facilities to maintain a drug-free environment.

Salazar was a member of a drug trafficking organization, and the prosecution claims that he had been anticipating “payments from outside sources” for getting the cocaine into the facility where he was being held. In addition, three other individuals were indicted in connection with the operation. These individuals included two detainees as well as a man who sources the drugs, according to the authorities. They are still being investigated.

As stated by Sheriff Russ Skinner, “The trafficking of drugs within our facilities is dangerous and unacceptable, and those who pose a public safety risk to our community and our staff members will continue to be held accountable for their actions.”