Owners of Smoke Shack and Smoke Shack 2 Sentenced to Federal Prison
|U.S. Attorney’s Office June 04, 2013|
BOISE—U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced that Robert T. Guerrero, Jr., 36, and Jason Daniel Guerrero, 34, both of Meridian, Idaho, were sentenced today to federal prison terms as part of Operation Not For Human Consumption, which targeted illegal sales of drug paraphernalia and “spice” at 13 Treasure Valley businesses. The Guerrero brothers are the former owners and operators of two Treasure Valley headshops, Smoke Shack and Smoke Shack 2. On February 26, 2013, both men pleaded guilty to one count of offering drug paraphernalia for sale and one count of money laundering.
U.S. District Judge Edward J. Lodge sentenced Robert Guerrero to 18 months and Jason Guerrero to 15 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release.
According to information presented at sentencing, Robert and Jason Guerrero were co-owners and operators of RG Distributing Inc., doing business as Smoke Shack and Smoke Shack 2. The businesses were located at 124 13th Avenue South in Nampa, Idaho; and 482-A West Main Street in Kuna, Idaho. The Guerreros admitted to knowingly and intentionally offering drug paraphernalia for sale, which included various glass pipes, metal pipes, plastic pipes, water pipes, bongs, bubblers, vaporizers, one-hitters, grinders, gas masks, and urine cleansing kits. The items were primarily intended and designed for illegal drug use. Additionally, the Guerreros manufactured and distributed controlled substance analogues, commonly referred to as “spice” or “potpourri.” The Guerreros admitted that they received profits in excess of $120,000 but less than $200,000 from a specified source of unlawful activity. On May 1, 2012, Jason Guerrero purchased diamond jewelry from an area jewelry store for $18,000 in cash. On May 8, 2012, Robert Guerrero purchased diamond jewelry for $22,000 in cash. The Guerreros admitted that the cash used to purchase the diamond jewelry was derived from the unlawful sale of drug paraphernalia.
Robert and Jason Guerrero are among the 18 defendants charged in 2012 in Boise as part of Operation Not for Human Consumption. According to search warrant affidavits, nine of the 13 businesses were openly selling “spice,” a substance that tested positive for AM-2201. “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. At the time Robert and Jason Guerrero manufactured and sold spice, AM-2201 was a controlled substance analogue. On July 10, 2012, President Obama signed the Synthetic Drug Abuse Prevention Act, which lists AM-2201 and 14 other chemicals as Schedule I controlled substances. 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.”
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.