A former federal corrections officer arrested and charged with smuggling 10 ounces of marijuana into the Metropolitan Detention Center in Sunset Park, according to a criminal complaint unsealed by the U.S. Attorney of the Eastern District of New York.
Jeremy Monk, who worked as an officer for the United States Bureau of Prisons for just under two years starting in May 2020, allegedly illegally attempted to provide drugs for inmates at the detention center in exchange for money.
“As alleged, the defendant violated his oath and duty as a correctional officer by smuggling narcotics into the Metropolitan Detention Center,” said Breon Peace, U.S Attorney for the Eastern District, in a statement. “This office, together with our law enforcement partners, are committed to maintaining the safety for incarcerated individuals and BOP employees, and will prosecute those who act as conduits for contraband into a correctional facility.”
On April 15, 2022 three days prior to his resignation, other staff members learned Monk was set to be paid $10,000 by inmates for smuggling drugs, alcohol and tobacco into the facility and leaving it in a staff restroom, according to the complaint.
“After Monk left the restroom, MDC staff secured and searched the location and found more than nine ounces of marijuana hidden on a shelf under cleaning materials,” the district attorney’s office said in a statement.
Before Monk was supposed to report to work on April 18, he called into the human resources department at MDC and immediately resigned. When asked why, the defendant allegedly stated it was because of “some stupid investigation.”
“As alleged, Mr. Monk put both his fellow corrections officers and the Metropolitan Detention Center’s inmate population at risk by engaging in a scheme to smuggle contraband, including illegal drugs, into the facility,” said Michael J. Driscoll, assistant director-in-charge at the Federal Bureau of Investigations, in a release. “As law enforcement officials, we all take an oath to uphold the law and protect our nation. Mr. Monk chose to violate that oath, and he will now face justice for the crimes we allege he committed.”
There are also allegations stating the defendant had successfully smuggled contraband before he was caught last spring. In December 2020, MDC staff searched an inmate’s cell after smelling marijuana. Although no drugs were found, the staff did recover a cell phone — considered contraband in the facility. Financial records showed that an “associate” of the inmate had tried seven times to send payments to Monk via the payment app CashApp. The attempted payments ranged from $750 to $4,000, according to the complaint.
All payments were blocked by the payment app. If found guilty, Monk faces up to five years in prison.
“Monk allegedly smuggled drugs into the prison, creating a dangerous environment for his fellow correctional officers, inmates, and the public,” said Ryan T. Geach, Special Agent-in-Charge at the federal Office of the Inspector General. “The Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General will continue to investigate and uncover these kinds of bribery schemes.”