The man who was in charge of the Department of Corrections Internal Affairs Division has admitted to his part in a major prison drug smuggling scheme uncovered in 2017.

Jeffrey Limo, a former DOC lieutenant, appeared for his change-of-plea hearing in the Superior Court of Guam on Thursday.

"Jeffrey Limo, how do you plead to the charge of official misconduct as a misdemeanor?" Judge Anita Sukola asked.

"Guilty, Your Honor," Limo said.

"Are you pleading guilty, sir, because you are guilty?" Sukola said.

"Yes, I am," Limo said.

Limo, who is represented by attorney John Ramos, was among several corrections officers, DOC inmates and others arrested and charged in connection with the contraband scheme in which drugs and other items were being smuggled into the Adult Correctional Facility in Mangilao.

All other charges against Limo, including the charge of receiving bribes, would be dismissed after he is sentenced.

Limo declined to comment following the hearing.

His plea agreement states he faces up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $1,000.

Limo's sentencing is pending his cooperation with the government to testify against his co-defendants.

Limo is expected to get a one-year suspended prison sentence with credit for time served and no fine. He would then be placed on two years of supervised release.

He is scheduled to be back in court for a further proceedings hearing on Oct. 28.

Cannot be rehired

"The prosecution division of the (Office of the Attorney General) takes no position regarding your efforts for reemployment with the Department of Corrections," Sukola said as she read from the agreement. "Are we for real? He cannot be rehired back again."

"It was something Mr. Limo wished to have in the plea," said Assistant AG Jeremy Kemper. "From my position, it's a nonconcession because the prosecution division doesn't have a say in what happens in the Civil Service Commission because we are not a party to it. The civil division of the AG's office will continue to defend the firing of Mr. Limo."

"It is against the law to rehire somebody who has been removed from the government of Guam for official misconduct," Sukola said. "I just want Mr. Limo to understand what I understand the law to be."

Limo told the court his Civil Service Commission case is pending resolution in the Superior Court.

Prison investigation

During the police investigation, phone records revealed that inmates Shawn Paul Johnson and Bruno Simmons allegedly coordinated with Ronald Meno on being transferred to different posts within the prison in exchange for payments.

It was alleged that Meno would split the payments with Limo.

One text message from Johnson to an individual who identified himself as “Juan” revealed that Johnson said he paid Limo $2,000 for a unit transfer and that Limo was “his ticket out of there,” court documents state.

Several of the other co-defendants have since taken similar plea deals with the government.