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Press Release

Amsterdam Man Sentenced to 105 Months for Unlawfully Possessing 5 Guns and Distributing Heroin

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of New York

ALBANY, NEW YORK – Shawn Taft, age 45, of Amsterdam, New York, was sentenced yesterday to 105 months in prison for possessing 5 firearms as a felon and distributing heroin. 

The announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Richard S. Hartunian and Special Agent in Charge James J. Hunt, New York Division, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). 

U.S. District Judge Mae A. D’Agostino also sentenced Taft to 3 years of post-imprisonment supervised release.

In May 2014, Taft sold heroin to another person on two separate occasions in the city of Schenectady.

On July 8, 2015, the U.S. Marshals Service, with assistance from the Amsterdam Police Department, went to arrest Taft at his home on heroin distribution charges.  While arresting him, an officer observed a .22 caliber rifle in a closet in the front bedroom of Taft’s residence.  Officers went on to find additional firearms in the residence, including three rifles and a High Standard, model 88, .22 caliber revolver.  The revolver was found in a bag of dog food on the back porch. The other guns were found in his bedroom closet. Taft had previously been convicted of a felony and could not possess a firearm. 

This case was investigated by the DEA, the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, and the U.S. Marshals Service, in conjunction with the Schenectady Police Department and the Amsterdam Police Department.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth R. Rabe.

Updated September 8, 2016

Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses