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GREAT FALLS — Thirteen people have been charged in a conspiracy to smuggle illegal articles into the Cascade County regional jail in Great Falls.

Sheriff Jesse Slaughter said Wednesday that 11 of the suspects have been arrested. There are warrants for the other two.

Slaughter says the scheme involved bonding someone out of jail, having them swallow or otherwise hide drugs or other contraband and then doing something to get re-arrested to bring the items into the jail.

Those re-arrested told jailers they had "enemies" in certain pods of the jail so they could be assigned to the pod where the inmates were awaiting delivery of the drugs, tobacco or lighters.

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The scheme involved five inmates, their relatives or spouses and several others.

Slaughter says the scheme was discovered in late May and a multi-agency investigation wrapped up in June.

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