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Press Release

Estherville Man to Federal Prison for Meth and Guns

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa
Previous gun conviction did not deter Moritz from carrying a gun, and crashing a motorcycle during flight from police.

A man who conspired to distribute methamphetamine and possessed a gun while doing so was sentenced March 6, 2019, to more than 15 years in federal prison.

Todd Christopher Moritz, 47, from Estherville, Iowa, received the prison term after a June 11, 2018, guilty plea to one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine, one count of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and one count of possessing a firearm in furtherance of his drug trafficking.

Evidence at the guilty plea and sentencing showed that in June 2017, Moritz, driving a motorcycle, attempted to evade police. Moritz crashed the motorcycle, then fled on foot.  Once apprehended, officers seized over 7 grams of methamphetamine, baggies, a digital scale, and eight cell phones from Moritz.  Despite Moritz’s prior conviction for possessing a firearm as a felon, he also had a loaded gun with an obliterated serial number. 

Moritz was sentenced in Sioux City by United States District Court Chief Judge Leonard T. Strand.  Moritz was sentenced to 189 months’ imprisonment.  He must also serve a 4-year term of supervised release after the prison term.  There is no parole in the federal system.  Moritz is being held in the United States Marshal’s custody until he can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mikala M. Steenholdt and investigated by the Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement, Emmet County Sheriff’s Office, Estherville Police Department, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and Iowa Division of Criminalistics Investigations. 

Court file information at

The case file number is 18-3012.  Follow us on Twitter @USAO_NDIA.

Updated March 8, 2019

Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses