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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

District of Montana

For Immediate Release

July 6, 2011

Michael W. Cotter, United States Attorney

Contact: Jessica T. Fehr, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana
(406) 247- 4637

Michael Ralph Niles Sentenced in U.S. District Court

The United States Attorney’s Office announced that during a federal court session in Billings, on July 6, 2011, before Chief U.S. District Judge Richard F. Cebull, MICHAEL RALPH NILES, a 50-year-old resident of Billings, appeared for sentencing. NILES was sentenced to a term of:

  • Prison: 211 months
  • Special Assessment: $200
  • Supervised Release: 5 years

NILES was sentenced in connection with his guilty plea to possession with the intent to distribute methamphetamine and possession of a firearm during a drug trafficking crime. In an Offer of Proof filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney James E. Seykora, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:

NILES was in possession of a firearm while in possession of methamphetamine with the intent to distribute it.

Because there is no parole in the federal system, the truth in sentencing guidelines mandate that NILES will likely serve all of the time imposed by the court. In the federal system, NILES does have the opportunity to earn a sentence reduction for good behavior. However, this reduction will not exceed 15% of the overall sentence.

The investigation was conducted by the Billings Big Sky Safe Streets Task Force.