By Rod Leveque, Staff Writer
Article Created: 01/23/2008 08:46:13 PM PST


A former correctional officer from the California Institution for Men in Chino pleaded guilty to perjury Wednesday for lying to a grand jury that investigated the criminal conduct of another guard.
Linda Diane Sherrow of Corona faces up to five years in prison when she returns for sentencing April 21 .

Sherrow, 49, admitted lying in 2004 to a federal grand jury investigating Shayne Ziska, a fellow officer who used his position to help inmates associated with the Nazi Low Riders prison gang, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Ziska routinely allowed white inmates out of their cells to pass contraband, distribute drugs and assault others, prosecutors said.

They said Sherrow told the grand jury she never saw Ziska open cell doors for the inmates even though she had, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Authorities caught the woman in the lie because she made conflicting statements during a previous interview, Assistant U.S. Attorney Kevin Lally said.

Other officers also told investigators they were with Sherrow when she saw Ziska help the inmates, Lally said.

Ziska, of Fontana, was convicted of federal-racketeering and civil-rights charges in 2006. He was sentenced to more than 17 years in prison.

Ziska continues to maintain his innocence. In a recent letter to the Daily Bulletin, he said he was convicted on bogus evidence manufactured by prosecutors as well as the testimony of inmates who lied on the witness stand. Z

iska went on to say he was frustrated by the judge in refusing to believe other guards who testified on his behalf throughout his case.

"They testified to the truth, and so did I," he said to U.S. District Court in Los Angeles.

r_leveque@dailybulletin.com

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