APRIL 25, 2007
The public official who once headed Florida’s Department of Corrections has been sentenced to eight years in prison for taking thousands of dollars in kickbacks from a contractor during his scandal-plagued tenure.
As Secretary of Florida’s prison system, James Crosby was in charge of the state’s largest agency which has 27,000 employees. Besides his criminal conviction, numerous scandals rocked his tenure, including officers convicted of steroid abuse, money disappearing from employee clubs, misuse of inmate labor and lots of drinking and wild parties.
This week a federal judge sentenced Crosby to nearly a decade in jail for taking more than $130,000 in kickbacks from a prison contractor. Crosby’s good friend and aide also participated in the kickback scheme and both men pleaded guilty last year.
A 31-year employee of the state’s prison system, Crosby apologized for the mess he left behind during his sentencing hearing this week. Florida’s new Corrections Secretary, James McDonough says “corruption had become a cancer on the department.”
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