Four Additional Defendants Sentenced in Treasure Valley
BOISE – Adam Schreiner, 25, of Boise, Idaho, the former owner and operator of Smoke N Accessories, LLC, is the fourth defendant in Operation Not for Human Consumption to be sentenced over the past two weeks. Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill sentenced Schreiner today to two years’ probation for offering drug paraphernalia for sale. Schreiner was also fined $1,200 and ordered to serve four months of home detention. He pleaded guilty to the charge on September 13, 2012.
Crystal and Thomas Blumke, the owners and operators of Other World Gallery, LLC, were sentenced on November 29 and December 10, respectively. Crystal Blumke was sentenced to two years of probation, ordered to serve one month of home detention, and must complete 100 hours of community service. Thomas Blumke was sentenced to one year of probation and was ordered to perform 100 hours of community service. Hannah Farrar, an employee of Piece of Mind, was sentenced to ten months of probation for possession of marijuana. She was ordered to complete 150 hours of community service and fined $300.
Three owners or employees of area head shops entered pleas of guilty on December 10. Jennifer Dixon, 39, of Meridian, Idaho, an employee of All Sunshine, LLC, pleaded guilty to one count of offering drug paraphernalia for sale. Raj V. Singh, 27, of Boise, the owner/manager of Wonderland Hookah and Tobacco Shop, also pleaded guilty to one count of offering drug paraphernalia for sale. Ali Mayid Kathem, 27, of Boise, an employee of One Stop Smoke Shop, pleaded guilty to one count of misprision of a felony. The charges of offering drug paraphernalia for sale and misprision of a felony are each punishable by up to three years in prison, a maximum fine of $250,000, and up to one year of supervised release. Sentencing for the defendants is set for March 11, 2013.
“The sentencings of Adam Schreiner, the Blumkes and Hannah Farrar demonstrate the ongoing success of the cooperative law enforcement efforts to use all available tools to combat the proliferation of synthetic substances and unlawful sale of drug paraphernalia,” said Olson. “These defendants, while under the supervision of federal probation officers, while doing community service, and when they pay their fines, will have to demonstrate that they no longer facilitate or support illegal drug trafficking in any fashion. These sentences should serve as another reminder that if you’re selling spice under any name, packaging or formula, if you’re promoting unlawful drug use that helps drug traffickers thrive, you better stop.”
These seven defendants are among the 18 charged earlier this year in Boise as part of Operation Not for Human Consumption, which targeted illegal sales of drug paraphernalia and “spice” at 13 Treasure Valley businesses. According to search warrant affidavits, nine of the 13 businesses were openly selling “spice,” a substance that tested positive for AM-2201. The DEA has determined that AM-2201 is a controlled substance analogue. “Spice,” a synthetic form of cannabis, which is a psychoactive herbal and chemical product that, when consumed, mimics the effects of cannabis. In the spring of 2011, the Idaho Legislature criminalized the sale of “spice” under state law. In March 2011, the Drug Enforcement Administration placed five synthetic cannabinoids into Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. It is against federal law to sell or offer for sale any paraphernalia that is primarily intended or designed for drug use, regardless of whether the seller advises their customers that the paraphernalia is for tobacco use only. The businesses are commonly referred to as “head shops.”
In November, three Boise area head shop owners were sentenced by Judge Winmill for offering drug paraphernalia for sale. Gabriel Adam Busby was sentenced to three years of probation and ordered to complete 300 hours of community service. Busby’s co-defendant, Bradley Berquist, was sentenced to three years of probation, fined $1,500, and ordered to serve six months of home detention. Busby and Berquist were the owners and operators of the head shop Twenty After, previously located in Boise. The men agreed to forfeit $82,990 worth of drug paraphernalia, which was seized from their business on May 10, 2012. Judge Winmill sentenced Yoke Fee Chan, owner/operator of Royal Smoke, LLC, to three years of probation and ordered him to pay a $1,500 fine.
Three other defendants are awaiting sentencing, including Anthony Stoner, owner and operator of Smoke N Accessories, LLC, on December 17; Janet Shirley, owner and operator of All Sunshine, LLC, and Antonio Mendoza, an employee of All Sunshine, LLC, on January 7.
Kirk Farrar, Troy A. Rawlings, Jason Guerrero, Donovan Johns and William Oldenburg are set for jury trials in 2013.
Operation Not for Human Consumption includes the cooperative law enforcement efforts of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation, Boise Police Department, Ada County Sheriff's Office, Canyon County Sheriff's Office, Nampa Police Department, Meridian Police Department, and the Canyon County Prosecutor's Office. The U.S. Marshals Service and Idaho State Police provided assistance.
Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) is a collaborative effort by federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and communities to prevent and deter gun violence.