Prison officials intercept drug filled newspaper

SANTA FE (KRQE) – It takes a team of people in New Mexico’s prisons to make sure the bad guys stay in and the bad stuff stays out.

On Friday afternoon, they intercepted a newspaper that could have done a lot of damage inside the State Penitentiary in Santa Fe.

The newspaper contained $15,000 worth of drugs glued between two pages.

“This kind of work takes extraordinary attention to detail,” said Corrections Secretary Gregg Marcantel. “You can’t assume too many things, if something doesn’t look right, you’ve got to take it to that next level.”

There are 7,000 prisoners in New Mexico. Each inmate sends and receives multiple pieces of mail every day and all of it gets vetted.

Marcantel says the contraband threat goes beyond prison walls.

“Those drugs were on the black market in Albuquerque neighborhoods,” he said. “There were crimes committed before that newspaper full of drugs made it into our prison system.”

Prison officials say the package was mailed from Albuquerque and that they already have good information about who sent it.

The person the package was intended for also faces discipline.

“To the extent possible, whoever mailed it is going to find themselves in a prison jumpsuit,” he said. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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