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Nice Niche In A Growth Industry

Business-man sitting at the desk, hands crossed.

March 17, 2020

Harvey Weinstein is only the latest and best-publicized high net worth-felon who’s had recourse to a prison consultant. The Guardian interviewed Christopher Zoukis, who did 12 years in the hoosegow and now “works with clients who have to do time.” He tells them that regulations govern almost every area of prison life, but “if you can apply some expertise, you can more or less make those policies work for you if there’s an issue.” Queried why rich people need prison consultants, he pointed out a big difference between the social structure and norms outside vs. inside, where white-collar guys are seen as targets, and are generally gullible to the kind of scams more experienced cons run. The most common concerns his clients voice concern safety, and the customs one must observe — how do you greet your cellmate for the first time? How do you convey respect? High-profile people need to be extremely respectful, he advises. Conflict avoidance is a great tool, but it doesn’t always work. Find someone who looks like you and ask him to show you the ropes, he counsels. Copy everything they do. That’s not very politically correct, but neither is prison.

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