I'm glad some conditions of probation involve association with known criminals. I think a lot of ex-cons do better if they can avoid the temptation of going back to their old street life. I worked with a guy who was on probation after serving time for armed robbery, and he was really serious about getting his life back together and staying clean. I even drove him to his AA meetings after work.
One day I came into work and he wasn't there. My manager told me he was back in jail because he and an old buddy decided to rob a convenience store. Probation rules might be harsh, but he would still be free if he had just obeyed them for a little while longer.