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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Drug Traffickers Sentenced In Federal Court

The United States Attorney's Office announced that IRENE ALINA MICHELL and TYSHA LEANN MICHELL were sentenced for trafficking methamphetamine from Washington into Montana. IRENE ALINA MICHELL, age 33, of Great Falls, Montana, was sentenced to a term of 132 months imprisonment, five years supervised release, and a special assessment of $100 during a federal court hearing in Great Falls, Montana, on May 1, 2014, before U.S. District Judge Brian M. Morris. On the same date, TYSHA LEANN MICHELL, age 35, of Great Falls, Montana, was sentenced to 60 months imprisonment, four years supervised release, and a special assessment of $100. The United States also forfeited cash proceeds and a vehicle used during the commission of the offense.

IRENE ALINA MICHELL and TYSHA LEANN MICHELL were sentenced in connection with their January 2013 guilty pleas to conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute methamphetamine. In an Offer of Proof, Assistant U.S. Attorney Ryan Weldon stated it would have proved that Sylvia Martinez transported methamphetamine from Washington to Great Falls, Montana. On October 31, 2013, federal agents observed IRENE ALINA MICHELL and TYSHA LEANN MICHELL and others parked at a local hotel. Agents conducted surveillance and watched several members of the conspiracy distribute methamphetamine. After obtaining a federal warrant, authorities searched the hotel that IRENE MICHELL, TYSHA MICHELL, and others were using and discovered 297.4 grams of pure methamphetamine, as well as cash.

Because there is no parole in the federal system, the truth in sentencing guidelines mandate that IRENE ALINA MICHELL and TYSHA LEANN MICHELL will likely serve all of the time imposed by the court. In the federal system, prisoners have the opportunity to shorten the term of custody by earning credit for good behavior. However, this reduction will not exceed 15% of the overall sentence.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Probation Office, and local law enforcement agencies.

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Updated January 14, 2015