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Two Westchester County men, including a correction officer, were arraigned Thursday for allegedly smuggling contraband to incarcerated individuals at Sing Sing Correctional Facility in Ossining in exchange for payments.
According to Westchester County District Attorney Mimi Rocah, Jose Estevez-Luciano, 33, of Irvington, and Francis De La Cruz, 24, of Sleepy Hollow, conspired to smuggle cell phones and other contraband into Sing Sing between Oct. 14, 2021 and Aug. 2, 2023.
It is alleged that the duo agreed that De La Cruz would receive the contraband and accept payments from associates of the incarcerated individuals at the direction of Estevez-Luciano, and thereafter De La Cruz would provide the contraband to Estevez-Luciano who would deliver the contraband to the incarcerated individuals in exchange for the payments.
It is further alleged that Estevez-Luciano smuggled cell phones and other contraband into the prison and delivered it to incarcerated individuals with the agreement to accept payments, including one such payment being more than $5,000.
“A correction officer allegedly violated his oath and duty by working with someone outside the facility to create a potentially dangerous environment for the incarcerated population and his fellow officers,” Rocah stated. “Our office will continue to work with the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision to investigate and prosecute those who participate in these kinds of schemes.”
Estevez-Luciano, a New York State correction officer assigned to Sing Sing since 2015, was charged with Conspiracy in the Fifth Degree, Bribe Receiving in the Second Degree, 12 counts of Bribe Receiving in the Third Degree, 12 counts of Promoting Prison Contraband in the First Degree, Promoting Prison Contraband in the Second Degree, and 13 counts of Official Misconduct.
De La Cruz was charged with Conspiracy in the Fifth Degree, Bribe Receiving in the Second Degree, 12 counts of Bribe Receiving in the Third Degree, 12 counts of Promoting Prison Contraband in the First Degree, and Promoting Prison Contraband in the Second Degree.
“The Department has zero tolerance for misconduct by staff, especially that which jeopardizes the safety of their colleagues, as well as incarcerated individuals and the community at large,” said New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision Acting Commissioner Daniel Martuscello. “This alleged conduct of the correction officer in this case is an egregious violation of the oath of office and a gross dereliction of duty. I commend the diligent work of our Office of Special Investigations and thank the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office for their partnership and willingness to pursue these charges.”
The Public Integrity and Law Enforcement Integrity Bureau of the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office and the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision Office of Special Investigations conducted the investigation. Estevez-Luciano was suspended without pay following his arraignment.
Rick has more than 40 years’ experience covering local news in Westchester and Putnam counties, running the gamut from politics and crime to sports and human interest. He has been an editor at Examiner Media since 2012. Read more from Rick’s editor-author bio here. Read Rick’s work here: https://www.theexaminernews.com/author/pezzullo_rick-writer/