Skilling's possible new home
FCI Butner, a medium security prison located in N.C., is also home to convicted spy, congressman.
By Chris Zappone, staff writer

NEW YORK ( -- If U.S. District Judge Sim Lake's suggestion holds, former Enron Chief Executive Jeffrey Skilling will see the start of the Thirties - the 2030s, that is - at a federal prison in North Carolina.

Lake recommended Monday that Skilling serve his 24-year sentence for fraud, conspiracy, insider trading and lying to auditors at a Federal Bureau of Prisons facility in Butner, N.C. The convictions stem from the implosion of Enron, the largest case of fraud in American history.

One of the federal medium-security prisons in Butner, N.C.

Federal Correctional Institution Butner is located near the Research Triangle area of Durham, Raleigh, and Chapel Hill, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons Web site.

The entire FCI Butner complex, which includes two medium-security prisons - one of which could be where Skilling's sent - alongside a satellite camp that houses minimum security prisoners, has an inmate population of 3,366 and a staff population of 959, according to the bureau's 2005 annual report.

Medium-security prisons have "strengthened perimeters" according to the bureau's Web site, which often include double fences with electronic detection systems, cell-style housing, "a wide variety of work and treatment programs."

Current inmates in the prison include Jonathan Pollard, a former civilian Navy analyst serving a life sentence for passing classified information to Israel, and former Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham, R-Calif., who's serving a sentence for accepting bribes.

Jobs for inmates can include cutting grass, raking leaves; doing plumbing or painting; working in food services; cleaning bathrooms, showers, and buffing floors, according to a spokesman for the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

Medium-security prisons provide educational programs including adult continuing education, GED high school equivalency certificate, and subjects such as English for speakers of other languages, personal growth and life skills. Such facilities have libraries, which include areas for inmates to do legal research.

While Lake may have recommended Butner, the decision is ultimately up to the bureau. It may place Skilling somewhere else due to lack of space, among other reasons.


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