A man who escaped from a Kansas jail and later was arrested in Utah has been sentenced to 30 years in prison for buying glassware for a methamphetamine laboratory and bringing it to Kansas City.
Herbert R. Montanye, 50, of Salt Lake City, and six others were convicted of conspiring to manufacture and distribute the drug in a laboratory hidden in a barn.U.S. District Judge Howard F. Sachs could have sentenced Montanye to a maximum life prison term, but said Friday he chose the minimum term so the defendant might have a chance at freedom.
Montanye contended his only involvement was seven telephone conversations with the convicted ring leader to take orders for the laboratory glassware, purchase it from a supplier in Idaho and drive it to Kansas City.
He said he was an unsuspecting participant.
On Feb. 18, Montanye and Steven D. Baker, a convicted drug dealer facing a life sentence, sawed their way out of a jail cell in Abilene, Kan. The escape went unnoticed for eight days.
The two drove to Utah, where they wrecked their car during a chase with Utah Highway Patrol troopers near Green River.
Baker was arrested a few hours later, while Montanye escaped on foot.
Not knowing Baker was wanted in Kansas, Utah authorities charged him with trying to evade a police officer and released him on $10,000 bail. He remains at large.
Montanye later was arrested in Green River when he allegedly broke into an unattended highway patrol office and stole a small bag of confiscated marijuana.
While in jail there, Montanye repeatedly asked jailers to return the shoes he wore when arrested.
Suspicious, authorities X-rayed the shoes and found five hacksaw blades inside.