MISSOULA – A Sinaloa, Mexico, man, who admitted methamphetamine trafficking and money laundering activities in the Butte area, was sentenced today to 17 years in prison to be followed by five years of supervised release, Acting U.S. Attorney Leif M. Johnson said.
Humberto Horiol Medina Villarreal, 34, pleaded guilty on March 25 to possession with intent to distribute meth and to conspiracy to commit money laundering.
U.S. District Judge Dana L. Christensen presided.
The government alleged in court documents that from about July 2017 until August 2020 in Butte, Villarreal and others were involved in drug trafficking. An undercover law enforcement agent ordered a pound of meth directly from Villarreal. When negotiating the price per pound of meth, Villarreal stated, “There’s people I give 5 packs, 10 packs, 20 packs, for four grand, and they get rid of that stuff in a week.” Law enforcement knew that Villarreal meant 5-pound, 10-pound and 20-pound shipments of meth. One pound of meth is the equivalent of 3,624 doses. Villarreal told the undercover agent to wire the money to “Ricardo Ramos Medina, Baja California North.” Ricardo Ramos Medina, of Sinaloa, Mexico, was convicted of meth trafficking in a related indictment and sentenced to eight years in prison.
The government also alleged that Villarreal conspired to launder money and directed others to wire money from Montana to California, and elsewhere, to pay for and fund the purchase of additional meth and other drugs.
Villarreal’s two co-defendants have been convicted of drug trafficking crimes and sentenced. Charles Joshua Petty, of Butte, was sentenced to 10 years in prison, while Shawn James Miller, of Deer Lodge, was sentenced to five years in prison.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Ryan G. Weldon prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, Homeland Security Investigations, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Montana Division of Criminal Investigation and the Butte Police Department.
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a U.S. Department of Justice initiative to reduce violent crime. Through PSN, federal, tribal, state and local law enforcement partners in Montana focus on violent crime driven by methamphetamine trafficking, armed robbers, firearms offenses and violent offenders with outstanding warrants.