Lawrence G. Kopp Sentenced in U.S. District Cour
The United States Attorney's Office announced that during a federal court session in Billings, on January 25, 2012, before Chief U.S. District Judge Richard F. Cebull, LAWRENCE G. KOPP, a 43-year-old resident of Billings, appeared for sentencing. KOPP was sentenced to a term of:
Prison: 87 months
Special Assessment: $200
Supervised Release: 4 years
KOPP was sentenced in connection with his guilty plea to distribution of methamphetamine.
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:
On September 16, 2009, law enforcement arranged a controlled drug purchase utilizing a CHS (Confidential Human Source). The transaction was set for Grass Range and the CHS made arrangements with another individual, (IND), to set up the deal. IND told the CHS that she would be bringing two subjects with her and identified the vehicle in which they would be traveling. Later that evening, the CHS met IND, KOPP and another female individual, (AIND), at a gas station in Grass Range. The CHS noted that s/he handed IND $4,400 for two ounces of methamphetamine and that KOPP was driving and AIND was in the front passenger seat. After the transaction was completed, a uniformed deputy in Mussellshell County stopped the vehicle for a traffic violation and positively identified all three subjects. KOPP, IND and AIND, acting in concert, distributed 43.2 grams of 49.4% methamphetamine or 21.3 grams of actual methamphetamine, a Schedule II controlled substance.
On September 28, 2009, the same CHS made telephonic contact with IND again for the purpose of purchasing one ounce of methamphetamine on September 29, 2009 in Billings. The following day, on September 29, 2009, the CHS called IND again and she told the CHS to come to her residence in Billings. After arriving at the location, the CHS made contact again with IND, KOPP, and AIND. On the body wire recording, AIND and KOPP could be heard weighing the methamphetamine out together, as they were having a disagreement as to how much was in an ounce. AIND and KOPP were acting in concert and aided and abetted each other in weighing out the one ounce of methamphetamine that was to be distributed to the CHS. The CHS ended up purchasing 26.9 grams of 47.9% methamphetamine or 12.8 grams of actual methamphetamine, a Schedule II controlled substance, for $2,400 cash. After the CHS left, it was realized that a digital scale belonging to the Drug Task Force was left at the residence. That scale was later recovered by law enforcement officers on November 24, 2009, from AIND's vehicle.
Because there is no parole in the federal system, the "truth in sentencing" guidelines mandate that KOPP will likely serve all of the time imposed by the court. In the federal system, KOPP 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.