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Press Release

California Man Sentenced to Over 18 Years for Conspiracy to Distribute 30 Pounds of Meth

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

SIOUX FALLS - United States Attorney Alison J. Ramsdell announced today that U.S. District Karen E. Schreier has sentenced a Salinas, California, man convicted of Conspiracy to Distribute a Controlled Substance. The sentencing took place on February 5, 2024.

Jose Rolando Gonzalez, 56, was sentenced to 18 years and four months in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay a $100 special assessment to the Federal Crime Victims Fund.

Gonzalez was indicted for Conspiracy to Distribute Methamphetamine by a federal grand jury in November of 2022. He pleaded guilty on November 6, 2023.

Gonzalez was arrested on September 25, 2022, when he was traveling through South Dakota and was approached by a police officer at a gas station in Brookings regarding traffic complaints about his driving. The officer ran his onsite police dog around the vehicle and the dog gave a positive indication to the presence of drugs. Law enforcement performed a search of the vehicle which revealed approximately 13.39 kilograms (approximately 30 pounds) of methamphetamine. Gonzalez was traveling from California, where his methamphetamine source was located, to Minnesota, with the intention of distributing the methamphetamine.

This case was investigated by the South Dakota Highway Patrol, Brookings Police Department, and the Drug Enforcement Administration. Assistant U.S. Attorney Paige Petersen prosecuted the case.

Gonzalez was immediately remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.



Updated February 15, 2024

Drug Trafficking