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Press Release

Former Taft Inmate Found Guilty of Threatening to Assault a Federal Judge

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of California

FRESNO, Calif. — After a four-day trial, a federal jury found Craig Martin Shults, 48, of New York, guilty on Friday of retaliating against a federal official by threat, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced.

According to evidence presented at trial, in 2016 at a federal prison in Taft, California, Shults, then an inmate, made threats to assault a federal judge with the intent to retaliate against the judge for presiding over a prior criminal case involving Shults. He made the threatening communications in retaliation for, among other reasons, being remanded to custody following a bond violation hearing, and being sentenced to a substantially longer prison sentence than Shults requested following Shults’ prior conviction.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation with assistance from the U.S. Marshals Service. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Angela L. Scott and Henry Z. Carbajal III are prosecuting the case.

Shults is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Lawrence J. O'Neill on March 11, 2019. Shults faces a maximum statutory penalty of six years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.

Updated December 17, 2018

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 1:17-cr-136 LJO