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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Idaho

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Final IDOC Correctional Officer Pleads Guilty To Crimes Stemming From FBI Sting

Erik Thompson Pleads Guilty to Possessing a Firearm in Furtherance of Drug Trafficking Crime

BOISE - Former IDOC correctional officer Erik Thompson, 37, pleaded guilty on January 7, 2019, in United States District Court to two counts of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, U.S. Attorney Bart M. Davis announced.  Sentencing for Thompson is set for April 7, 2019 before U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill at the federal courthouse in Boise.

Thompson was one of four IDOC correctional officers charged with drug trafficking and related crimes stemming from an investigation initiated by the FBI at IDOC’s request to address concerns of corruption among IDOC correctional officers.

Thompson was charged with conspiracy to aid and abet drug trafficking crimes, distribution of cocaine, and possessing a firearm in furtherance of those drug trafficking offenses.  Previously, co-defendants Richard McCollough, 37, pleaded guilty to the same firearms offenses as Thompson, while Robert Wallin, 36, and Timothy Landon, 36, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to aid and abet drug trafficking crimes.  Wallin is set to be sentenced on February 12, 2019, McCollough is set to be sentenced on February 25, 2019, and Landon is set to be sentenced on February 26, 2019.  Judge Winmill is the sentencing judge for all defendants.

According to court records, Thompson joined in a conspiracy to assist what he believed to be a large-scale drug organization.  The drug dealers he was working for, however, were undercover FBI agents.  Thompson admitted to carrying a handgun while conducting surveillance of what appeared to be a drug transaction on behalf of the undercover FBI agents.  Thompson also admitted to carrying a handgun while he provided security and assisted in weighing 6 kilograms of cocaine.

No drugs were in the sole possession of the defendants, and no drugs or other contraband were brought into any IDOC facility as part of these operations.

Each count of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, is punishable by at least five years imprisonment up to life, a maximum fine of $250,000, and at least five years of supervised release.

In addition to the FBI, the Boise Police Department, the Meridian Police Department, IDOC’s Special Investigations Unit, and the Ada County Prosecutor’s Office participated in the investigation.

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Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses
Public Corruption
Component(s): 
Contact: 
CASSIE FULGHUM Public Information Officer (208) 334-1211
Updated January 29, 2019