California prison guard, accused in smuggling case

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Updated: 3/27/2014 4:47 pm

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) — A guard at a Central California prison has been indicted on charges accusing him of smuggling drugs, money and cellphones.

U.S. Attorney Benjamin Wagner said Thursday that 28-year-old Ramon Cano of Bakersfield conspired with 32-year-old Gerardo Alvarez-Montanez, an inmate at Taft Federal Correctional Facility, a prison in the southernmost part of the San Joaquin Valley.

A grand jury issued indictments, charging them with conspiring to provide and possess contraband in prison, the distribution of a controlled substance and bribery of a public official.

Cano worked full time at the prison as a contract correctional officer. Prosecutors say he smuggled heroin, methamphetamine and other items for Alvarez-Montanez in return for cash. Both men face up to 40 years in prison if they're found guilty.

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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