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Press Release

Helena Man Sentenced to Federal Prison for Firearm Offense

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

HELENA – Mario Antonio Alicea, a 28-year-old Helena resident, was sentenced today to 37 months in prison followed by 3 years supervised release after pleading guilty to felon in possession of firearms on November 16, 2017.  U.S. District Judge Charles C. Lovell handed down the sentence. 

On April 25, 2016, Alicea sold a Ruger, model Mark II, .22 caliber semi-automatic pistol for $180.  It was loaded with eight rounds of ammunition but there was not a round in the chamber.  At around the same time, Alicea also sold methamphetamine to a confidential informant.  After he was arrested, Alicea admitted that he traded methamphetamine to acquire the gun. 

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Paulette Stewart and investigated by the Missouri River Drug Task Force and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. 

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone.   Attorney General Jeff Sessions reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.


Acting Public Information Officer
(406) 761-7715

Updated April 19, 2018

Project Safe Neighborhoods