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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, January 31, 2020

Informational: Federal Court arraignments

The U.S. Attorney’s Office announced that the following persons were arraigned or appeared this week before U.S. Magistrate judges on indictments handed down by the Grand Jury or on criminal complaints. The charging documents are merely accusations and defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty:

Appearing in Billings before U.S. Magistrate Judge Timothy J. Cavan and pleading not guilty today was:

Shawna Renee Bercier, 37, of Laurel, on charges of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine and distribution of meth. If convicted of the most serious charge, Bercier faces a minimum mandatory five years to 40 years in prison, a $5 million fine and at least five years of supervised release. Bercier was released pending further proceedings. The Eastern Montana High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force investigated the case. Pacer case reference. 19-144.

Appearing on Jan. 30 was:

Braden Charles Losing, 25, of Miles City, on charges of prohibited person in possession of a firearm. If convicted of the most serious crime, Losing faces a minimum 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release. Losing was detained pending further proceedings. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigated the case.

This case is part of Project Guardian, a Department of Justice initiative launched in the fall of 2019 to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws. Through Project Guardian, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Montana is working to enhance coordination of its federal, state, tribal and local law enforcement partners in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes. In addition, Project Guardian supports information sharing and taking action when individuals are denied a firearm purchase by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System for mental health reasons or because they are a prohibited person. Pacer case reference. 20-08.

Hugo Javier Quiroga, 46, of Billings and Mexico, on charges of false representation of Social Security number, false claim of U.S. citizenship and aggravated identity theft. If convicted of the most serious crime, Quiroga faces a maximum five years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release. Quiroga was detained pending further proceedings. The FBI investigated the case. Pacer case reference. 20-04.

Appearing on Jan. 29 was:

Susan Wilkinson, 33, of Billings, on charges of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and possession with intent to distribute controlled substances. If convicted of the most serious crime, Wilkinson faces a minimum mandatory five years to 40 years in prison, a $5 million fine and at least four years of supervised release. Wilkinson was released pending further proceedings. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigated the case.  Pacer case reference. 19-137.

Appearing on Jan. 28 was:

Daniel Kenneth Sherman, 34, of Worden, on charges of prohibited person in possession of a firearm. If convicted of the most serious crime, Sherman faces a maximum 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release. Sherman was detained pending further proceedings. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigated the case.  

This case is part of Project Guardian, a Department of Justice initiative launched in the fall of 2019 to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws. Through Project Guardian, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Montana is working to enhance coordination of its federal, state, tribal and local law enforcement partners in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes. In addition, Project Guardian supports information sharing and taking action when individuals are denied a firearm purchase by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System for mental health reasons or because they are a prohibited person. Pacer case reference. 19-150.

Tyrezes Demarquis Taylor, 25, of Billings, on charges of prohibited person in possession of a firearm and false statement during a firearms transaction. If convicted of the most serious crime, Taylor faces a maximum 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release. Taylor was detained pending further proceedings. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigated the case.

This case is part of Project Guardian, a Department of Justice initiative launched in the fall of 2019 to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws. Through Project Guardian, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Montana is working to enhance coordination of its federal, state, tribal and local law enforcement partners in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes. In addition, Project Guardian supports information sharing and taking action when individuals are denied a firearm purchase by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System for mental health reasons or because they are a prohibited person. Pacer case reference. 20-09.

Appearing in Missoula before U.S. Magistrate Judge Kathleen L. DeSoto and pleading not guilty on Jan. 29 was:

James Robert Starcevich, 24, of Butte, on charges of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine and possession with intent to distribute meth. If convicted of the most serious crime, Starcevich faces a minimum mandatory 10 years to life in prison, a $10 million fine and five years to life of supervised release. Starcevich was released pending further proceedings. The Drug Enforcement Administration, Butte-Silverbow law enforcement and U.S. Postal Service investigated the case. Pacer case reference. 20-01.

If any of the above cases are of interest to your media organization and the community it serves, we encourage you to monitor the progress of the case regularly through the U.S. District Court calendar and the PACER system.

To establish a PACER account, which will allow you to review documents filed in the case, please go to, http://www.pacer.gov/register.html. To access the district court’s calendar, please go to https://ecf.mtd.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin/PublicCalendar.pl.

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Component(s): 
Contact: 
Clair Johnson Howard Public Information Officer 406-247-4623
Updated January 31, 2020