On Dec. 12, a former correctional officer from West Virginia was sentenced to four years in prison. The man was charged with participating in a plot to bring methamphetamine into the South Central Regional Jail in Charleston and distribute it. The defendant was convicted for a federal charge of possession with intent to distribute meth and a state charge of delivery of a controlled substance. The man’s case is unrelated to the recent ‘Nazi salute” photo controversy involving corrections officer trainees.

According to court records, the alleged drug smuggling scheme was prompted by a request for meth by an inmate at the jail. The inmate reportedly asked the defendant to participate in the scheme because of his position as a corrections officer. The defendant was later arrested while allegedly attempting to purchase the drugs that were requested.

The investigation into the man’s alleged crimes reportedly involved the use of an undercover agent. The agent pretended to be a drug trafficker, paying the defendant $2,000 and handing him 4 ounces of meth in the parking lot of a grocery store close to the jail. The defendant was arrested shortly afterward before bringing any drugs into the jail.

When a criminal investigation involves the use of undercover agents, there is a lot of potential for mistakes on the part of law enforcement. If investigators do not act appropriately or fail to obtain evidence in a legal manner, the defendant may be able to have much of the evidence in their case dismissed. A criminal defense lawyer may be able to help reduce charges or argue for a case dismissal.