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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Montana
For Immediate Release
Jesse Laslovich, United States Attorney
www.justice.gov/usao-mt
Wednesday, October 11, 2023

Idaho Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Trafficking Meth in Great Falls, Helena

GREAT FALLS, Mont. — An Idaho man who admitted to trafficking methamphetamine in Great Falls and Helena was sentenced today to 10 years in prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Jesse Laslovich said.

Thomas Lee Dieruf, 40, of Osborn, Idaho, pleaded guilty in May to possession with intent to distribute meth.

Chief U.S. District Judge Brian M. Morris presided.

The government alleged in court documents that law enforcement in Great Falls and Helena identified Dieruf as supplying meth, and in January 2022, investigators arranged for a purchase of meth from Dieruf. After agreeing to the deal, Dieruf left his home in Idaho and traveled to Montana, where law enforcement detained him at a gas station in St. Regis. Officers executing a search warrant on his car located approximately a quarter pound of meth, a digital scale, plastic baggies and two pistols.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey K. Starnes prosecuted the case. The Russell Country Drug Task Force, Missouri River Drug Task Force, FBI and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives conducted the investigation.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department of Justice launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities and measuring the results.

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