Bail was set recently at $50,000 for a New York prison officer accused of making inmates and their families pay him to smuggle drugs and other contraband into the jail.
Sgt. Paul Mayes, 47, pleaded innocent in Onondaga County Court to 14 criminal counts, including official misconduct, promoting prison contraband, bribery and receiving an award for official misconduct. Each count carries a maximum of up to seven years in prison.
Mayes contended he was being wrongfully accused by disgruntled inmates at the Onondaga County Correctional Facility in Jamesville, according to his attorney, Richard Priest.
''They will do anything they can to get the [officers] in trouble,'' Priest said. ''It looks from first appearance here that we have inmates who were not happy with the way the [officer] was treating them, handling them or enforcing the laws.''
Prosecutors said they have evidence that Mayes tried on at least three different occasions to bring cigarettes, alcohol and drugs to inmates.