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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Montana

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Carlos Danilo Menjivar-Rojas Sentenced In U.S. District Court

The United States Attorney's Office announced that during a federal court session in Billings, on June 26, 2013, before U.S. District Judge Donald W. Molloy, CARLOS DANILO MENJIVAR-ROJAS, a 37-year-old resident of Riverton, Wyoming, was sentenced to a term of:

Prison: 168 months

Special Assessment: $100

Supervised Release: 5 years

MENIJIVAR-ROJAS was sentenced in connection with his guilty plea to conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute methamphetamine.

In an Offer of Proof filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica T. Fehr, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:

In the spring of 2011, Eastern Montana HIDTA agents began performing electronic surveillance on MENIJIVAR-ROJAS (a/k/a "Chico"), an El Salvador National living in Billings. MENIJIVAR-ROJAS previously resided in northern California.

In June of 2011, MENIJIVAR-ROJAS was arrested for immigration violations. In early August of 2011, MENIJIVAR-ROJAS posted a bond to be released from ICE custody and returned to Billings.

In May of 2011, law enforcement learned the identity of several individuals that were distributing methamphetamine for MENIJIVAR-ROJAS. One individual interviewed by law enforcement admitted to selling methamphetamine for MENIJIVAR-ROJAS for three or four months. This individual saw MENIJIVAR-ROJAS with 8 or 9 pounds of methamphetamine in coffee cans in the back of his black Cadillac. MENIJIVAR-ROJAS charged the individual $1,200 for an ounce of methamphetamine. Additional witnesses linked MENIJIVAR-ROJAS to the distribution of numerous pounds of methamphetamine. Law enforcement corroborated the information about the individuals distributing for MENIJIVAR-ROJAS through searches of cellular telephones, recorded jail calls, and controlled purchases of methamphetamine.

When MENIJIVAR-ROJAS was arrested for immigration violations, his wife Dawn Menjivar and Armando Hernandez-Vaca continued to distribute methamphetamine to his sources and to collect drug debts on his behalf. Between the time of his arrest and the time of his release, MENIJIVAR-ROJAS was in daily contact with Dawn Menjivar. MENIJIVAR-ROJAS was giving Dawn Menjivar directions on who to collect money from, as well as who to "deal with."

Law enforcement learned through the investigation that MENIJIVAR-ROJAS distributed methamphetamine in Billings from May 2010 until late January of 2012. The conspiracy involved over 500 grams of methamphetamine.

Dawn Menijivar and Hernandez-Vaca pled guilty to federal charges.

Because there is no parole in the federal system, the "truth in sentencing" guidelines mandate that MENIJIVAR-ROJAS will likely serve all of the time imposed by the court. In the federal system, MENIJIVAR-ROJAS 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.

Updated January 14, 2015