NewsCrime and Courts


Billings man convicted in federal court for role in large meth ring

Posted at 7:07 PM, Feb 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-13 20:26:14-05

A Billings man was convicted Wednesday in federal court for his role in a meth-trafficking ring that brought hundreds of pounds into Montana, according to U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme.

Nicholas John Montano, 34, was found guilty by a jury of conspiracy to possess meth with intent to distribute and possession with intent to distribute. The trial began Monday.

Montano faces a mandatory minimum of 10 years in federal prison to life, a $10 million fine and at least five years supervised release.

U.S. District Judge Susan P. Watters set sentencing for June 24.

Federal prosecutors said at trial that Montano received the meth from Joshua Clause, the head of a large Billings-area trafficking ring who is serving a 15-year prison sentence .

Clause told authorities he supplied Montano with up to a pound of meth each time he restocked, according to Alme. The two once traveled together to southern California to get meth from a supplier, and Clause supplied Montano with 10 to 15 pounds of meth during their partnership.

Montano was arrested on a federal warrant on Aug. 19, 2018, after he fled in a stolen vehicle, then broke into and hid in a woman's apartment in North Billings.