Consultant pleads guilty in prison drug program scam

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NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — A consultant to federal prison inmates has pleaded guilty to fraud charges in connection with a scheme to coach prisoners how to lie their way into a drug and alcohol treatment program that results in sentence reductions.

Tony Pham, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court in New Haven, Connecticut. He faces up to 25 years in prison when he is sentenced in March.

Authorities say Pham and two other Michigan residents ran a firm that had clients fake drug or alcohol problems to get into a treatment program that can cut up to a year off prison sentences.

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