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Name: People v. Lee
Case #: F046238
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 5 DCA
Opinion Date: 02/07/2006

Appellant, an inmate, was convicted of conspiracy to furnish a controlled substance to a prison inmate, in violation of Penal Code section 4573.9. On appeal, he argued that he could not properly be charged with or convicted of conspiring to violate section 4573.9 because he was an inmate. He contended that the statute applies to any person “other than a person held in custody” who furnishes controlled substances. The appellate court rejected his argument and affirmed. Criminal conspiracy is an offense distinct from the actual commission of the offense. The purpose of section 4573.9 is to prohibit the presence of drugs in the institutions. The legislative history of the statute does not suggest that it intends to exempt inmates who conspire with noninmates to bring controlled substances into the prisons. Therefore, appellant was properly charged and convicted of conspiracy to violate the statute.