10-06-08 Boise Gang Member Sentenced on Federal Charges
Boise, Oct. 6, 2008 - The Boise Police Gang Unit has been working with the US Attorney, other federal, state and local law enforcement partners, including the Treasure Valley Violent Crimes Task Force, investigating Anthony J. Austin, 27 of Boise, for selling meth in exchange for firearms, a federal violation.
Boise Police Gang detectives uncovered evidence Austin had sold drugs and guns for at least the past year in the Boise, Meridian, Canyon County area. He is a documented Boise-based gang member who detectives say had an affiliation with several area gangs through his drug and gun sales.
The sentencing of the suspect, Austin shows the law enforcement partnership is effective in investigating and prosecuting known gang, drug, and weapons crimes in Boise and the Treasure Valley.
News Release from the US Attorney's Office:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 6, 2008
Contact: Kristi McKown
Public Information Officer
Special Assistant U.S. Attorney
TREASURE VALLEY PARTNERSHIP’S SAUSA PROGRAM LEADS TO FEDERAL
SENTENCING OF GANG MEMBER
Anthony John Austin, a documented member of a Boise street gang, was sentenced to
serve 101 months in federal prison for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and
for using a firearm in relation to a drug trafficking crime, U.S. Attorney Tom Moss announced
Austin was prosecuted by the Special Assistant United States Attorney hired by the
Treasure Valley Partnership under its SAUSA program. Austin’s prosecution was also part of
Idaho’s Project Safe Neighborhoods Anti-Gang Initiative, designed to reduce gun violence in the
“Today’s sentencing proves that the Treasure Valley now has an effective tool to combat
gang activity,” Mayor David Bieter said. “The length of this sentence should send a message to
other gang members that this type of activity will not be tolerated in our community.”
Austin, 27, was indicted on February 13, 2008, after an extensive investigation by the
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Boise City Police Department’s
He pleaded guilty to both crimes in federal court on July 7. He was sentenced on
Thursday by U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill at the Federal Courthouse in Boise.
Despite Austin’s lack of prior felonies, the combination of guns, drugs and gang activity
resulted in the lengthy prison sentence. Federal law mandates a five-year prison sentence when a
firearm is used in connection with drug trafficking activities. The five-year term will be served
consecutively to the drug sentence. As there is no parole in federal court, Austin will be required
to serve his entire sentence. Following his 101-month sentence, Austin will serve five years on
supervised release, during which he may have no contact with any gang member.
The SAUSA (Special Assistant United States Attorney) program was created in 2007 by
the Treasure Valley Partnership in cooperation with the State of Idaho, Owyhee County and the
U.S. Attorney’s Office to federally prosecute gang criminals in the Treasure Valley. The SAUSA
prosecutor works in conjunction with crime task forces to eliminate gang crime.
If convicted, gang criminals are jailed in federal prisons outside of Idaho, which saves Idaho taxpayers
millions of dollars and also acts as an additional disincentive to current and potential gang
members. Idaho currently has no federal prison facilities.
The Treasure Valley Partnership is a non-profit group composed of elected Treasure
Valley officials seeking to solve issues associated with growth.