The judge showed leniency because Sally McGrath only smuggled contraband because she was in love with an inmate.
Sally McGrath, a 25-year old operations instructor at the Category B HM Prison Garth in Leyland, was spared jail time after a judge determined that she had been exploited by an inmate. McGrath was given a suspended sentence of two years on a 21-month sentence.
McGrath fell in love with a career criminal who used her to smuggle contraband, including anabolic steroids, into the prison where she worked.
McGrath became infatuated with 32-year old Ashley Keany. Keany was sentenced to eight years imprisonment in 2015 due to his involvement with a drug-dealing gang that distributed heroin and crack cocaine. McGrath was one of 11 co-conspirators convicted in the case.
Sally McGrath smuggled steroids out of love and not for financial gain.
Brunley Crown Court Sentencing Judge Sara Dodd did not feel that McGrath was deserving of prison time. Judge Dodd felt McGrath was “particularly vulnerable” to Keany’s charms.
McGrath was a lowly paid operations instructor who supervised workshop activities. She had previously been involved in an abusive relationship and was susceptible to the attentions of the inmates.
McGrath reportedly fell “hook, line and sinker” for Keany propositions.
But Judge Dodd blamed Keany for what transpired.
“There is no doubt you [Keany] were the driving force behind the offences. You used and manipulated Miss McGrath as you requested her to bring prohibited items into prison, you called it “blagging her”. She was particularly vulnerable. Sally McGrath, you did what you did out of infatuation. You were, in fact, groomed.”
McGrath was busted smuggling tobacco into the prison during a search upon her arrival for work on November 29, 2017. A search of her house found two 60-milliliter vials containing testosterone propionate. Police also found mobile phones that contained intimate text messages between McGrath and Keaney.
McGrath was fired from her job and required to fulfill 240 hours of unpaid community service. Meanwhile, Keany received an additional 42 months added to his prison sentence.
Walker, A. & Smith, S. (July 1, 2019). Prison officer who plotted to smuggle steroids into jail walks free as judge says she was ‘groomed’ by bodybuilder inmate. Retrieved from manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/ok-babes-love-you-besotted-16511600