News and Press Releases

Rian Erik Britt Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Cour

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Bill Mercer, United States Attorney for the District of Montana, announced today that during a federal court session in Missoula on June 3, 2009, before U.S. District Judge Donald W. Molloy, RIAN ERIK BRIT, a 32-year-old resident of Kalispell, pled guilty to possession of a firearm by a user of a controlled substance. Sentencing is set for October 15, 2009. He is currently released on special conditions.

In an Offer of Proof filed by the United States, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:

On April 14, 2008, BRITT reported that his vehicle had been stolen by a friend (A.W.). The Lincoln County Sheriff's Office responded and located the vehicle which was being driven by A.W. The vehicle was impounded and a search warrant obtained based on information provided by A.W. The officers found 8.5 pounds of marijuana and 1 pound of hashish in the trunk, as well as a pistol in the backseat.

When interviewed while at the Sheriff's Office regarding the return of his vehicle, BRITT admitted to possession of both the pistol and the drugs. He also admitted to being a frequent user of marijuana.

The gun that BRITT possessed was a .40 caliber Smith & Wesson pistol, model 4053.

BRITT faces possible penalties of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and 3 years supervised release.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Tara J. Elliott prosecuted the case for the United States.

The investigation was a cooperative effort between the Lincoln County Sheriff's Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

A copy of the Offer of Proof can be obtained by contacting Sally Frank at (406) 247-4638.



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