EAST ST. LOUIS — An inmate who was running a smuggling operation bringing high-purity methamphetamine into a federal prison in Illinois was sentenced Friday to 10 more years behind bars after a co-defendant was caught mailing meth in a newspaper, prosecutors said.

In April of 2014, James L. Gary asked Candace J. Weakley to send meth to him inside the federal prison in Greenville, Ill., according to his plea agreement. Weakley hid packets containing 6.5 grams of 97 percent pure meth in a newspaper and mailed the paper to the prison, court records show, but it was intercepted by prison staff.

A subsequent investigation revealed that Gary orchestrated the smuggling into the prison and the distribution of the drug once it was inside, U.S. Attorney Don Boyce said.

The pair were indicted in January 2016. Weakley, now 30, pleaded guilty to providing contraband in prison in May 2016. She was sentenced that October to 70 months in prison.

Gary, 43, pleaded guilty in June to attempting to obtain contraband in prison. He has a "significant prior criminal record," a judge ruled last year. Boyce said that his 10-year sentence will run after he finishes a 105-month sentence for a federal gun charge from the Western District of Missouri. He also has prior convictions for escaping from a federal prison camp in Leavenworth, Kansas, a 2005 charge of meth possession by an inmate from Kentucky and a credit-card related charge from Missouri in 1996, Boyce said. Court records show less than one gram of meth was found in Gary's locker at a Kentucky prison.

Prison officials and Gary's lawyer did not immediately return messages seeking comment.

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