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Press Release

Billings man admits trafficking meth, fentanyl, heroin

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Montana

BILLINGS — A Billings man accused of possessing multiple drugs, including methamphetamine and more than 9,000 fentanyl pills, for distribution admitted to a trafficking crime today, U.S. Attorney Leif M. Johnson said.

Eric Charles Swan, 44, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute controlled substances. Swan faces a mandatory minimum 10 years to life in prison, a $10 million fine and five years of supervised release.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Timothy J. Cavan presided. A sentencing date will be set before  U.S. District Judge Dana L. Christensen. The court will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors. Swan was detained pending further proceedings.

In court documents, the government alleged that law enforcement began an investigation into Swan and co-defendant Elizabeth Ronshaugen in 2021 after receiving information of possible drug trafficking. In November, agents observed that Swan was traveling to Denver and returning to Montana. Law enforcement pulled over Swan and Ronshaugen near Buffalo, Wyoming, and Swan was found to have several fentanyl pills in the pocket of his clothing. During a search of the vehicle, Wyoming law enforcement located approximately  9,616 fentanyl pills, approximately 466 grams, or a little more than one pound, of heroin, 103 grams of meth, a gram of cocaine, 14 Dialudid pills and $9,775 in U.S. currency. Ronshaugen has pleaded not guilty to charges.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas K. Godfrey is prosecuting the case, which was investigated by the Eastern Montana High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a U.S. Department of Justice initiative to reduce violent crime. 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.

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Contact

Clair J. Howard
Public Affairs Officer
406-247-4623

Updated March 15, 2022

Topics
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Component
Release Number: 22-065