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Seven charged in Harris cell phone smuggling plot

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Updated: 8/15 5:11 am
LAS VEGAS (KSNV MyNews3.com) – Seven people have been charged in connection with the successful plot to get cell phones and other contraband to accused Strip shooter Ammar Harris.

Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto announced the charges today.

The cell phones were found on or about May 13 inside Harris’ cell at High Desert State Prison.

After the discovery, an investigation by the Inspector General’s Office of the Nevada Department of Corrections was conducted.

According to the investigation, Harris gave $2,000 to an associate named Amy Colon. Colon then provided the money to Charmain Simmons, the mother of another inmate involved named Derrick McKnight. Simmons then provided the money to Reann Gadson, who purchased two cell phones and provided them to Olga Gonzalez. Gadson and Gonzalez then met with former correctional officer Derland Blake, who allegedly smuggled the phones and other items into the prison and on to Harris and McKnight.

The individuals charged:

•Derland Blake, 30, of North Las Vegas, three counts furnishing a portable telecommunications device to state prisoner, three counts asking or receiving bribe by public officer, misconduct by public officer and conspiracy.

• Amy Colon, 35, of Atlanta, furnishing a portable telecommunications device to state prisoner, bribery of public officer, and conspiracy.

• Reann Gadson, 33, of Las Vegas, two counts furnishing a portable telecommunications device to state prisoner, bribery of public officer, and conspiracy.

• Olga Gonzalez, 27, of Las Vegas, three counts furnishing a portable telecommunications device to state prisoner, two counts bribery of public officer, and conspiracy.

• Ammar Harris, 28, of Las Vegas, two counts possession of a portable telecommunications device by state prisoner, bribery of public officer, and conspiracy.

• Derrick McKnight, 35, of Las Vegas, possession of a portable telecommunications device by state prisoner, bribery of public officer, and conspiracy.

• Charmaine Simmons, 53, of Las Vegas, two counts furnishing a portable telecommunications device to state prisoner and conspiracy.

The case is being prosecuted by Deputy Attorney General Karen A. Whelan and Acting Chief Deputy Attorney General Jamie Resch of the attorney general’s special prosecution unit.

A criminal complaint is a statement of charges. The defendants are presumed innocent until guilt is proven in a court of law.
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