Gainesville Sun, FL
The importance that Oscar Shipley has played in at least one federal investigation involving the Florida Department of Corrections was underscored Wednesday morning when a prosecutor took a position normally held by defense attorneys.
Assistant U.S. attorney Don Pashayan successfully argued against sending Shipley to prison for his part in a steroid distribution ring.
Shipley, 34, who worked for the prison system for 13 years before being charged in the steroid case, was facing up to five years in prison under the federal sentencing guidelines. Instead, after listening to Pashayan's argument against prison time, U.S. District Court Judge Henry Lee Adams Jr. ordered Shipley to serve two years of probation, then warned Shipley he would wind up in prison if he violated probation.
Shipley was among the five men - four had worked in state prisons - who were charged with various drug crimes for their part in importing steroids into North Florida from Egypt between May 2002 and May 2004 and distributing steroids and other drugs to correctional officers and others. Three who have already been sentenced in the case were ordered to serve probation of two years or less. A fourth man had pleaded guilty. Shipley pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute steroids in July.