Minnesota couple admits possessing nearly 1,000 pounds marijuana
BILLINGS—A Minnesota couple admitted on Thursday in U.S. District Court to possessing for distribution nearly 1,000 pounds of marijuana in their recreational vehicle after getting arrested in Miles City, U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme said.
Steven Thomas Robinson, 59, and his wife, Vicki Lynn Robinson, 59, of Milaca, Minn., each pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute marijuana. The maximum penalty is a minimum mandatory five years to 40 years in prison, a $5 million fine and four years supervised release.
U.S. District Judge Susan Watters presided at the hearing.
On Aug. 30, 2017, the Montana Highway Patrol’s Eastern Montana Interdiction Task Force received information from a Minnesota drug task force that an RV was transporting a large quantity of marijuana from California to Minnesota. The Montana Highway Patrol located the RV in a Walmart parking lot in Miles City and began surveilling the vehicle. The RV left the parking lot and stopped at the Gold Dust Casino parking lot. Officers saw two occupants of the RV leave the casino and head to the RV. The officers approached and began talking to the couple, identified as the Robinsons.
When the officers asked for license and registration documents, Vicki Robinson said the registration was in the RV. When she opened the door, officers smelled a strong order of raw marijuana. A police K-9 then alerted to the vehicle.
Steven Robinson agreed to speak with officers and admitted there was about 800 pounds of marijuana in the RV and that he was transporting it. He told officers he had delivered before and was paid $20,000. He also consented to a search of the RV and his cell phone. Officers found about 960 pounds of marijuana.
Judge Watters set sentencing for March 14 in Billings. The couple was released.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Tom Godfrey prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the Eastern Montana Interdiction Task Force.