A former federal corrections officer has been sentenced to five years behind bars for helping a prisoner orchestrate a multimillion-dollar fraud scheme from behind prison walls.
Court records show a federal judge on Wednesday imposed the sentence on 39-year-old Michael Mazar, who worked at Miami's downtown Federal Detention Center. Mazar was also ordered to pay nearly $9 million in restitution.
Prosecutors say Mazar provided cellphones to inmate James Sabatino, who used them to contact retail and jewelry stores while pretending to work for film and music companies that supposedly wanted various items shipped to locations around South Florida. In reality, the goods were shipped to co-conspirators who then sold them at pawn shops and other locations.
Sabatino is serving a 20-year sentence after pleading guilty to a racketeering charge.