(STL.News) – A Billings man convicted at a bench trial of methamphetamine distribution crimes was sentenced today to 10 years in prison and five years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme said.
U.S. District Judge Susan P. Watters in July found Darrell Franklin Holliday, 48, guilty of possession with intent to distribute meth and two counts of distribution of meth as charged in an indictment. Judge Watters presided at sentencing.
During the bench trial, prosecutors presented evidence that Holliday was distributing meth in the Billings area in August and September 2017. Investigators conducted two controlled buys of methamphetamine from Holliday during this period. In a recorded statement to officers, Holliday admitted he used meth daily when he had the chance. Holliday also made incriminating statements in recorded jail calls.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Zeno Baucus and Karla Painter prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the Eastern Montana High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force and the FBI.
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a U.S. Department of Justice initiative to reduce violent crime. According to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports, violent crime in Montana increased by 36% from 2013 to 2018. Through PSN, federal, tribal, state and local law enforcement partners in Montana focus on violent crime driven by methamphetamine trafficking, armed robbers, firearms offenses and violent offenders with outstanding warrants.