Big Deal Showy Bust of Contraband at MCC Results in Virtually Nothing Seized

By George Frobisher

K.R. Claviger commented sagely, “A bust occurred at the Manhattan Correctional Center (MCC) rather than the Metropolitan Detention Center (MDC) where Keith Raniere is lodged.  The same exact stuff goes on all the time at MDC.

“Most of the so-called ‘contraband’ is brought in by the guards – and sold by them to the inmates. Every once in a while, they’ll do a bust like this, but it’s mostly for show – and the main players will have been warned, in advance, of when and where it was going to happen.”

Yeah, it was done for show. And I loved the way it was described in mainstream media:

The Daily Mail wrote in their headline and subheadline

“Guards at troubled New York jail find weed, cigarettes, cellphones, cords and barbecue sauce hidden in shower vent…

  • “Included in the stash were a pack of Newports, a lighter, vape pen, numerous iPhones, some five ounces of cannabis, loosies and cellphone charges 
  • “Barbecue sauce was also found and it was theorized that the condiment was used to season the chicken at the facility” 

OK. So this is a big story. Look what they got and its value:

  1. A pack of cigarettes [$10]
  2. A lighter [$5]
  3. vape pen [$20]
  4. four iPhones [$1,000]
  5. 5 ounces of marijuana [$1500 or 270 per ounce]
  6. 100 loosies [$100] [Loosies are individual cigarettes sold outside of the pack,]
  7. four cellphone chargers [$100].
  8. BBQ sauce [$3-

Total take — less than $3,000 in contraband.

Hardly headline news.

The New York Daily News called however called it a “sizable stash.”

The contraband was found in a ceiling vent in an inmate shower area.


If anybody thinks this raid got anywhere near 10 percent of the contraband in the facility, they are naive. Like Claviger said, “it goes on all the time.”

Many guards make a nice addition to their biweekly paychecks by regularly smuggling contraband.  For the most part, I think it is benign.

What struck me most in this story was the BBQ sauce.

The idea that an 18 oz bottle of Kraft Sweet Brown Sugar Barbecue Sauce is contraband speaks volumes about the sick and sadistic way Americans treat prisoners.

Not to mention Americans put the largest percentage of their population in prison.  As of 2016, 2.3 million people were incarcerated in the United States, at a rate of 698 people per 100,000.  The US has around 25% of the world’s prisoners with 4.25 percent of the world’s population.

Not only does the US have the highest percentage of citizens in prison, it also has the most prisoners. The slave state of China with 1.4 billion people has 1.6 million in prison compared to the US’s 2.3 million and a population of  327 million, or 23 percent of China’s population.

Image result for americans in prison

Picture of the “sizable stash.”

Which brings us back to BBQ sauce.

The Daily Mail contacted an expert to explain why illegal BBQ sauce might be found stashed in prison.

“‘The inmates use the warmers that warm up the food to make special barbecue chicken,’ said Fitzgerald David, a retired corrections officer. ‘They use it to flavor up their chicken on chicken day.’

“David added that inmates have to get innovative to add flavor to the bland chicken they get from the facility.

“‘If you put meat on the electric warmers for a long period of time, it cooks even more. It’ll brown the meat, make it … like fried chicken,’ David added.

“‘Somebody had to bring that to them. There’s no way in hell an inmate can get f–king barbecue sauce in jail unless someone brings it to them.'”

Sure somebody – likely a guard – had to bring the BBQ sauce into prison. There is demand because the food prisoners get is not only lacking in nutrition, it tastes horrible.

To me, this is more pathetic than criminal.

Even the stash of marijuana, which is increasingly being touted as healing for those who suffer a myriad of ailments – from pain to depression to cancer – and in prison they suffer – and don’t get adequate medical care – is hard for me to work up great wrath over.

A group of prisoners- maybe a group of cruel and sadistic men – seek out small pleasures – a cigarette, a toke on a joint, a phone to make a call to wife or child not monitored – and BBQ sauce to make the horrid food they eat day after day taste decent  – on the occasion they get some real chicken.

Yeah, cruel men no doubt – most of them in prison deservedly. And Americans seem as cruel as their prisoners. Rape is condoned in prison either tacitly by indifference or proactively by the mindset that says “they deserve it.”

One wonders how prisoners will learn anything other than that official cruelty is not much different than their private cruelty.

We house them in places that ruin their health.  We feed them food we would not give our dogs. We allow them to be raped without any outrage or serious effort to eradicate this monstrous invasion of rights. We allow them to be beaten. Sometimes killed.

All the while feeling they are only prisoners so they deserve it. [Forget the fact that there are innocent people in prison caused by the mad epidemic of prosecutorial misconduct in America.]

Without losing rational judgment and while insisting on safeguarding society from menaces, a little decent behavior is more likely to prompt some prisoners to change in these so-called “correctional facilities.” The present system is right out of the middle ages.

From slave state with Africans to slave state with prisoners, land of the free with 4 million slaves in 1865 to the land of the free with 2 million slaves in 2019.

Suppose the slaves could have BBQ sauce on their chicken legally? Would that somehow lessen or increase crime in America in the future?



About the author

George Frobisher


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  • That’s actually a lot of money right there in prison cash… What we pay for those items mean nothing. It’s what you charge.

  • George you’re a bleeding heart liberal. Prisoners can’t smoke pot and too bad they can’t have BBQ chicken. If they want BBQ chicken, tell them not to commit crimes

  • “Included in the stash were a pack of Newports, a lighter, vape pen, numerous iPhones, some five ounces of cannabis, loosies and cellphone charges
    “Barbecue sauce was also found and it was theorized that the condiment was used to season the chicken at the facility”

    It’s god damn comical how the inmates and guards stage contraband finds.

    The discovered contraband was a perfect mix like prisoner gift box or care package. They couldn’t possibly be more obvious.

    The only question is did the guards stash the “contraband” themselves or did the inmates “collaborate” and stash the contraband for the guards to discover?

  • I’m outraged that Frank Report supports the use of marijuana by prisoners. It might be OK for some people if they have a medical prescription or live in a state that permits it. But prisoners have no such rights. And as for too many people in prison, based on what I have seen of America, not enough people are in prison.

  • Mr. Frobisher,

    I greatly enjoy reading your articles and perspectives on various issues. I wish you posted more writings.

    Thank so much!

  • Are they certain it was actually bbq sauce in that jar? Many of these items seem innocuous, but in many prisons across the US, items such as these contain suboxone, synthetic marijuana, etc. When a person ingests synthetic marijuana, aka K2, they often become extremely violent. Many of these items are so new that dogs aren’t trained to detect them. Drugs in prison are more rampant now than 10 years ago. And it endangers staff and inmates.

    Also, items like these are like currency in a prison. An inmate can leverage others’ behavior by controlling these items. “Want me to kick the hell out of Vanguard? Gimme 10 of those cigs and I will”.

    They’re not quite as innocent as they appear.

    • Jarhead,

      How much revenue do you think the type prison gang makes monthly from running the prison protection extortion rackets at a state or federal prison typically?

      Or how much money overall [estimate]is generated at a typical prison? Like gross overall average profits from all the various prison gangs at just one prison?

      • I wish I could answer that, but I’d suspect it varies from prison to prison, depending on the dominant gang(s). We’ve seen cases of people who purposely violated parole in order to smuggle in drugs. The gangs can be very methodical in many ways. Thugs…yes. Dumb…no.

    • True that, shadow. With liberty comes responsibility. Some folks refuse to take responsibility for their own actions. Thus, we have too many people incarcerated.

  • Relatively few people in the U.S. are aware of the fact that the 13th Amendment did not entirely abolish slavery in our country. Instead, it contains an “exception clause” that specifically allows the government to treat prisoners as slaves.

    Here’s the actual language of the 13th Amendment: “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”

    The “exception clause” is the basis for why prisoners in the U.S. are treated so abysmally. The only way to ensure that prisoners are treated humanely is to remove the “exception clause” from our Constitution.

    • Jesus, I thought your kind were dead
      “Even one gram of marijuana is too much.” Your right about that, Duke. The smoke I get from my doctor is a one-hitter quitter. One gram lasts me a week and I haven’t committed one crime nor have I killed anyone. I’m glad they gave me this medicine card. Saved me from going underground to get it.

      • I’m not scared of weed. You should be scared of it if you smoke it. It has been proven to destroy brain cells and lead to deadlier drugs.

          • Lemon haze marijuana has actually helped me stop drinking alcohol and popping prescription pain pills.
            And, honestly, I’m not a stoner. I take a little puff and keep it moving. I work 24-7 and love the freedom from the real “dope” the kind prescribed by greedy doctors.
            Not one overdose documented yet for smoking pot this year BTW.

        • False statement.
          Try again are you for real? That’s such bullshit fed by people who taught D.A.R.E.
          Your scared just admit it.

    • It’s not a big deal but the odds are that the “marijuana” seized at MCC was actually “K-2”. That’s much more common that traditional marijuana in prisons.

  • Fuck the man, power to the people! I laugh when someone tells me, “I have to.” Brother, I said all I have to do is live white and die. That must have been a southern boy that brought the sauce. Ain’t nothin better than some one dollar KC masterpiece.

About the Author

Frank Parlato is an investigative journalist.

His work has been cited in hundreds of news outlets, like The New York Times, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CBS News, Fox News, New York Post, New York Daily News, Oxygen, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, The Sun, The Times of London, CBS Inside Edition, among many others in all five continents.

His work to expose and take down NXIVM is featured in books like “Captive” by Catherine Oxenberg, “Scarred” by Sarah Edmonson, “The Program” by Toni Natalie, and “NXIVM. La Secta Que Sedujo al Poder en México” by Juan Alberto Vasquez.

Parlato has been prominently featured on HBO’s docuseries “The Vow” and was the lead investigator and coordinating producer for Investigation Discovery’s “The Lost Women of NXIVM.” Parlato was also credited in the Starz docuseries "Seduced" for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

Additionally, Parlato’s coverage of the group OneTaste, starting in 2018, helped spark an FBI investigation, which led to indictments of two of its leaders in 2023.

Parlato appeared on the Nancy Grace Show, Beyond the Headlines with Gretchen Carlson, Dr. Oz, American Greed, Dateline NBC, and NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, where Parlato conducted the first-ever interview with Keith Raniere after his arrest. This was ironic, as many credit Parlato as one of the primary architects of his arrest and the cratering of the cult he founded.

Parlato is a consulting producer and appears in TNT's The Heiress and the Sex Cult, which premiered on May 22, 2022. Most recently, he consulted and appeared on Tubi's "Branded and Brainwashed: Inside NXIVM," which aired January, 2023.

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Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083


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