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Press Release

Burley Man Sentenced to 5 Years for Drug Trafficking

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

POCATELLO – A Burley man was sentenced to 60 months in federal prison for distributing methamphetamine.

According to court records, on April 20, 2020, detectives with the Minidoka-Cassia Drug Task Force received a tip that suspicious activity was occurring in an industrial business complex in Paul, Idaho. Task force detectives conducted surveillance based on the tip and saw Fernando Najera, 42, of Burley, arrive at the industrial complex. He was seen carrying a bag into one of the buildings. Najera left a short time later in his vehicle. Further investigation led to a search of Najera’s vehicle where detectives located approximately 35.5 grams of methamphetamine, a large amount of U.S currency, and other indicia of drug sales.

Senior U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill ordered Najera to serve four years of supervised release following his prison sentence. Najera was also found in violation of federal supervised release from a prior federal drug trafficking conviction. Najera was sentenced on this violation to 18 months in prison to be served concurrently with his 60-month prison sentence.

Acting U.S. Attorney Rafael M. Gonzalez, Jr., of the District of Idaho made the announcement and commended the cooperative efforts of the Cassia County Sheriff's Office and the Minidoka County Sheriff's Office collaborative task force, which led to charges.

This case was handled by the U.S. Attorney Office’s specially deputized Special Assistant U.S. Attorney (SAUSA), funded by the Eastern Idaho Partnership (EIP) and the State of Idaho. The EIP is a coalition of local city and county officials in eastern Idaho as well as the Idaho Department of Correction.

The EIP SAUSA program allows law enforcement to utilize the federal criminal justice system – through the EIP SAUSA – to prosecute, convict, and sentence violent, armed criminals and drug traffickers. These criminals often receive stiffer penalties than they might in state courts.

This program was created in January 2016. Since that time, approximately 186 defendants have been indicted by the EIP SAUSA. Of these defendants, 139 have been indicted on drug distribution charges. The defendants indicted under the program have been sentenced to 7,646 months (approximately 637 years) in federal prison, representing an average prison sentence of 53.4 months (4.45 years). Defendants indicted for drug distribution cases serve, on average, approximately 58.9 months (4.9 years) in federal prison.



Public Information Officer
(208) 334-1211

Updated November 22, 2021

Drug Trafficking