GTL Reaches Settlement with Mississippi Attorney General

With pride in our integrity, we choose to focus on innovation over litigation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Reston, Virginia (PRNewsWire) – August 15, 2017GTL, an innovation leader in correctional technology, education solutions that assist in rehabilitating inmates, and payment services solutions for government, today announced that it has entered into an agreement with the State of Mississippi to resolve a civil lawsuit for $2.5 million.

“We have always acted with integrity,” said Brian Oliver, GTL’s Chief Executive Officer. “So why are we settling? We can spend the next three years focused on innovation or litigation. We choose innovation.”

The settlement acknowledges that GTL denies any involvement or liability in any wrongdoing. In a statement, Attorney General Hood said: “As a company that continues to contract with the State, Global Tel*Link quickly approached our office seeking settlement after the Epps scandal. Due to their cooperation, we have now resolved this matter.”

GTL was one of 15 companies involved in civil lawsuits filed by the state following the conviction of Christopher Epps, former commissioner of the Mississippi Department of Corrections, for his role in an extortion scheme.

“This whole episode is the result of the corrupt actions of a bad actor, Mr. Epps, who is now in prison,” Oliver said. “We work with many great public officials in Mississippi and across the country every day. This is an aberration, not representative of the many fine corrections leaders and personnel we work with.”

GTL provided full, unstinting cooperation to law enforcement and was not a party to the illicit acts of Epps. Testimony in related federal proceedings confirmed that GTL’s contracts with the State of Mississippi are legitimate. GTL has provided service to the State of Mississippi since 2005 and remains a service provider to the State today.

“Like many other public and private sector organizations facing such litigation, we cleared the decks to focus on our customers, not the courtroom,” said Jeff Haidinger, President of GTL. “It is a credit to our employees that while working to resolve this matter, we continue to serve the State of Mississippi with high-quality service and leading-edge technology. That is why we continue to be a trusted partner.”

“I am proud of the integrity of our people and our company,” Oliver said. “We are glad to close the door on this issue so we can focus our full attention on rolling out the next generation of technology solutions to our customers.”

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About GTL
GTL leads the fields of correctional technology, education, and government payment services with visionary solutions and customized products that integrate seamlessly to deliver security, financial value, and operational efficiencies while aiding inmate rehabilitation and reducing recidivism rates. With the recent acquisition of Telmate, GTL has strengthened its suite of solutions for the corrections industry and expanded its community corrections portfolio with Telmate Guardian, a smartphone-based GPS monitoring solution. As a trusted industry leader, GTL provides services to over 2 million inmates in more than 2,500 correctional facilities in the United States and Canada, including 33 U.S. departments of corrections, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and many large city/county/provincial facilities. GTL is headquartered in Reston, Virginia, with an employee presence throughout North America. To learn more about GTL, please visit www.gtl.net or our social media sites on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.

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GTL Reaches Settlement with Mississippi Attorney General

In the push to reduce the recidivism rate, correctional facilities are moving away from a traditional layout to one that is designed for inclusiveness and keeping inmates engaged with outside society. Studies have shown that maintaining a support structure is a key component to keeping inmates on the right path to successful reintegration into society after release. In Australia, a new maximum security prison opened this year that includes no cells. Instead, inmates are housed in dormitory-style accommodations with 25 inmates in 16 ‘pods’ that offer more access to education, entertainment, and communication with friends and families. This novel move seeks to enhance inmates’ daily lives by making these services more accessible and improve re-integration into society. Inmates have access to technology that connects them with friends and family members, news, books, movies, education, games, and more. They are required to work for up to five hours during the day and pursue education and other programs in the remaining time. This progressive approach aligns with GTL’s vision of technology and education being available to every inmate. “GTL has the technology portfolio to enable correctional facilities to execute their strategies,” said Gad Tobaly, President, GTL International. “Whether those strategies are similar to the open-plan jail approach or focus on a more traditional environment, we offer the innovations to help facilities become safer and more secure while providing inmates with access to programs that improve their lives during and after incarceration.” GTL creates new technologies and advocates for tablets, education, and other programs to help reduce recidivism rates. “These new facilities highlight the need for technology in corrections,” said Eric Gonzalez, Executive Director, Technology and Implementation Services. “Today’s inmates are digital natives, having grown up in the age of computers, cell phones, tablets, and more. It is only logical that providing them with technology and programs to learn and better themselves through those access points is the direction that corrections is taking.” As part of GTL’s ongoing mission to keep our offerings in line with global corrections trends, the company will once again be a sponsor at the International Corrections & Prisons Association (ICPA) Annual Conference. This year’s conference is being held at the Montreal Marriott Chateau Champlain in Montreal, Canada. The conference theme of “Beyond Prisons: The Way Forward” will draw discussion on the underpinning philosophies, strategic direction, policies, and practices being instituted across the globe. More than 500 delegates from over 70 countries attend this prestigious conference. GTL and two collaborating organizations will present on two topics that relate to the use of technology in aiding the corrections and criminal justice systems. “Transforming the Inmate Environment: How and Why Facilities are Implementing Tablet Programs” will discuss how technology is used to humanize correctional efforts and will take place on Tuesday, October 23rd at 11:00 a.m. in Maisonneuve A Room. “Virtual-Enabled Justice: Delivering Swifter Outcomes and Improved Victim and Witness Experience” will discuss the use of technology to create ‘virtual courts’ that fuel efficiency, safety, and security, and will take place on Tuesday, October 23rd at 3:30 p.m. in Maisonneuve A Room. To learn more about our technology solutions, contact GTL today.