How they did it: Associated Press reporters expose systemic problems in the Federal Bureau of Prisons


One day in January 2022, Associated Press reporters Michael Balsamo and Michael Sisak were sitting at a Starbucks in Long Island, where they both grew up, planning their investigation into the nation’s prison system, when Sisak got a message from a long-time source asking him if he had heard about the resignation of Michael Carvajal, who had been the director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons since 2020.

Less than two months before, the two had published a story revealing that more than 100 federal prison workers had been arrested, convicted or sentenced for crimes since 2019, a number much higher than in other law enforcement agencies. In response, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee had called on the U.S. Attorney General to fire Carvajal. And now Carvajal was resigning.

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