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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

Washington Group Plaza IV
800 Park Blvd., Suite 600
Boise, Idaho 83712
(208) 334-1211

For Immediate Release

February 4, 2009

Thomas E. Moss, United States Attorney

Contact: Kristi Johnson, Public Information Officer

Aaron Lucoff, Assistant U.S. Attorney

(208) 334-1211

Alfredo Esparza, Sr., Sentenced to 22 Years in Federal Prison

Alfredo Esparza, Sr., 59, was sentenced to 22 years in federal prison following his guilty pleas to federal drug and gun offenses, U.S. Attorney Tom Moss announced.

Esparza, Sr., and his son, Lucio, were arrested December 6, 2007, in Caldwell following a multi-agency investigation into their drug trafficking activities. On May 19, 2008, Esparza, Sr., pleaded guilty in federal court to multiple methamphetamine distribution counts and two counts of unlawfully possessing a firearm. Lucio also pleaded guilty in federal court to two counts of methamphetamine distribution and unlawful possession of a firearm. He will be sentenced later this month.

On February 4, 2009, Esparza, Sr., was sentenced by Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill at the Federal Courthouse in Boise. Commenting that Esparza, Sr., lacked any redeeming qualities, Judge Winmill ordered Esparza, Sr., to serve a 22-year sentence in federal prison.

Judge Winmill noted that the sentence was essentially a life sentence for Esparza, Sr., who suffers from health issues and may not live beyond the prison sentence. However, in the event Esparza, Sr., is released from prison, Judge Winmill imposed a lifetime period of supervised release, meaning that Esparza, Sr., will be supervised by a U.S. Probation Officer for the remainder of his life. Winmill also banned Esparza, Sr., from ever returning to Idaho, including travel through Idaho to another state.

Judge Winmill ordered Esparza, Sr., to forfeit to the government his interest in his Caldwell residence, several vehicles, firearms, and additional property and currency since those items were acquired with drug proceeds. Judge Winmill also imposed a $20,000 fine to ensure that his family and heirs do not profit from any of his property that was not seized by law enforcement. Esparza, Sr., must also pay a $700 special assessment.

U.S. Attorney Tom Moss praised the sentence and the investigative efforts of the federal and local law enforcement agencies involved in the investigation, including ATF, DEA, FBI, IRS, ICE, the Treasure Valley Metro Violent Crimes Task Force, the Ada and Canyon County Sheriff’s Offices, and the police departments for the cities of Boise, Caldwell, Nampa, and Meridian. This case takes a major player out of the gang scene in the Treasure Valley. The message for the gangs and guns groups is that you’re going to pay a high price if you violate drug and gun laws in our community.

The prosecution was part of Idaho’s Project Safe Neighborhoods program, which seeks to reduce gun violence.