Consequences of Contraband Mail

At some point you might be tempted to mail contraband to your inmate. After all, how much trouble will it really cause, right? The answer is, plenty. The consequences of being caught mailing contraband to an inmate or an inmate receiving it can be severe.

Criminal Charges

If your inmate is in a state or county that makes contraband a crime, you and your inmate could be charged. In some states, such as Virginia it is a felony. In others it is a misdemeanor. But in all cases, a criminal record is something you want to avoid. The penalties for a criminal conviction range from just under a year in jail to several years in prison.

Other Issues

You will also be facing some penalties outside of the criminal courtroom. It is almost a sure bet that you will lose all current and future visitation privileges for that jail and possibly any facility in the state. In addition, your mail privileges will be revoked for a while if not forever. If you get someone to send letters for you, that person risks criminal prosecution as well as sanctions at the jail too.

The Inmate’s Consequences

When all is said and done, even if you escape any trouble, your inmate won’t. If he/she is caught with contraband, life will get real hard real fast. Common punishments for contraband possession include, an indefinite loss of all commissary, phone and mail privileges. A possible loss of visitation. And in the worse cases, the inmate is transferred to another jail/prison, typically far away.

Final thoughts: Contraband might seem like a minor request, but the reality is if your inmate asks, he/she is putting you in a very serious situation and you need to refuse.

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writes about inmates, jails, prisons, courts and the lives of people who live and work within the United States Criminal Justice System. His mission can be summed up in a single word; transparency.