Bonner County man sentenced to more than 11 years in federal prison on methamphetamine charge

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Aug. 12—A 50-year-old Bonner County man convicted by a federal jury of conspiring to smuggle methamphetamine in shampoo bottles will spend more than 11 years in prison.

Sean Robert Wathen was found guilty in July of one count of conspiracy to distribute the drug. Investigators said Wathen was part of a group that included Larry Junior Hillbroom, Morgan Kenney and Zachary Craig Carlson, all of whom conspired to smuggle drugs out of the Inland Northwest and to Guam and Palau, including in shampoo bottles, over several months in 2015.

Wathen had argued at trial he was not the leader of the group and that his participation was minimal. The jury in Coeur d'Alene rendered a guilty verdict after deliberating for about four hours following a five-day criminal trial, according to court records.

The sentence was handed down by U.S. District Court Judge B. Lynn Winmill on Tuesday.

"Whether illegal drugs are being pushed into Idaho or sent as far away as Palau and Guam, we will spare no effort to track down drug traffickers and hold them accountable," said Josh Hurwit, Idaho's U.S. attorney, in a statement announcing the sentence.