Idaho woman sentenced for conspiring to distribute bath salts, conspiring to commit money laundering - East Idaho News
Crime Watch

Idaho woman sentenced for conspiring to distribute bath salts, conspiring to commit money laundering

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The following is a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office (Idaho).

BOISE – Angela Marie Klinkhamer, 44, of Caldwell, was sentenced to 70 months in federal prison for conspiring to distribute controlled substances and conspiring to commit money laundering, U.S. Attorney Josh Hurwit announced.

According to court records, Klinkhamer and her coconspirators engaged in a lengthy conspiracy to distribute drugs, including bath salts (alpha-PHP or synthetic cathinone). Klinkhamer’s role in the conspiracy involved renting a mailbox where the drugs were shipped from overseas.

After the drugs arrived at the mailbox, Klinkhamer distributed the drugs to others. She also collected over $10,000 in drug proceeds for the organization, which she provided to codefendants through bank transactions and crypto currency exchanges. When conducting the financial transactions involving drug proceeds, Klinkhamer took steps to conceal the nature and source of the drug proceeds.

Chief U.S. District Judge David C. Nye also sentenced Klinkhamer to serve three years of supervised release following her prison sentence. Klinkhamer pleaded guilty to the crime on November 28, 2022. Codefendant Laura Denise Russell, 65, of Boise, is scheduled to enter a guilty plea on April 4, 2023. Codefendants Troy Thomas Wheeler, 48, of Meridian, and Michael Robert Osborn, 39, of Boise, are scheduled for trial to begin June 20, 2023.

“Drug trafficking organizations are constantly evolving in how they traffic drugs and launder money, including by using crypto currencies” said U.S. Attorney Hurwit. “This case shows that, despite their best efforts, these criminals cannot outrun law enforcement.”

“Drug trafficking organizations have a devastating impact on our communities, and we are committed to doing everything in our power to disrupt their illegal activities. Our ongoing efforts to dismantle these organizations and bring their members to justice can make a significant impact in reducing their prevalence and keeping our communities safe,” said Special Agent in Charge Robert Hammer, who oversees HSI operations in the Pacific Northwest. “I commend the agents at both HSI and the IRS for their tireless work and dedication to this important mission.”

“IRS Special Agents are experts in unraveling complex financial transactions and money laundering schemes involving crypto currencies,” said Andy Tsui, Special Agent in Charge, IRS Criminal Investigation Denver Field Office. “This sentencing should send a clear message to drug traffickers that CI and our law enforcement partners are relentless in our mission to dismantle drug trafficking organizations and bring these criminals to justice.”

U.S. Attorney Hurwit credited the cooperative efforts of Homeland Security Investigations, IRS – Criminal Investigation, and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, which led to the charges.