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Junior Larry Hillbroom, two others face federal drug charges in Idaho

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HAGÅTÑA (The Guam Daily Post) — An heir of the late millionaire businessman Larry Hillblom was arrested with two other Idaho men on July 15.

Junior Larry Hillbroom, 36; Morgan Kenney, 34; and Sean Robert Wathen, 48, all of Hope, Idaho, face federal charges of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine, according to a press release from U.S. Attorney Bart M. Davis of the District of Idaho.

This isn't Hillbroom's first run-in with the law as he was arrested in Koror, Palau, on charges of paying two women to bring approximately $160,000 worth of meth to the island nation on a flight from the Philippines in 2016, The Guam Daily Post files state.

These latest U.S. federal charges stem from a June 16 indictment filed in U.S. District Court by a federal grand jury in Coeur d'Alene, the Idaho U.S. attorney's press release stated.

The indictment states that beginning in the summer of 2015 and continuing to February 2016, Hillbroom, Kenney and Wathen conspired to distribute methamphetamine.

The meth conspiracy charge is punishable by up to 20 years in federal prison, a maximum fine of $1 million and at least three years of supervised release. Hillbroom, Kenney and Wathen were scheduled for their initial appearance Friday at the federal courthouse in Coeur d'Alene.

This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, Bonner County Sheriff's Office, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Coeur d'Alene Police Department, Idaho State Police, U.S. Border Patrol and U.S. Marshals Service.

The indictment is the result of a joint investigation by the Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force. The OCDETF program is a federal multiagency, multijurisdictional task force that supplies supplemental federal funding to federal and state agencies. The task force's principal mission is to identify, disrupt and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking, weapons trafficking and money laundering organizations, and those primarily responsible for the nation's illegal drug supply, according to the press release.

Palau arrest

In February 2016, Hillbroom was arrested upon arriving in Palau on a flight from Manila, the Philippines. Authorities seized 160 grams of methamphetamine, with an estimated street value of $160,000, from two passengers who were on board the same flight. According to Post files, the two women alleged that Hillbroom had promised them money to carry the drugs and paid for their airline tickets.

Shortly after he was arrested, he escaped from police custody, for which he was sentenced to a 60-day prison term.

Regarding the drug trafficking charge, Hillbroom pleaded no contest to a lesser charge of conspiracy to traffic a controlled substance, as part of a plea agreement. The agreement stipulated a 10-year probation to be reduced to seven years if Hillbroom completes inpatient rehabilitation; five-year incarceration to be served if he fails to complete the rehabilitation; pay a fine of $50,000; complete an intensive inpatient six-month rehabilitation, cost of which to be paid by Hillbroom, according to a Pacific Note article. Hilbroom, who holds both U.S. and Palau passports, was allowed to leave Palau to get drug treatment in the U.S. mainland.

Hilbroom is one of the four DNA-proven children and heirs of DHL founder Larry Hillblom. Hillbroom won a share of $90 million from the $550 million estate left behind by his father though he's been reported to have said his fortune has shrunk.

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