Amasa Pinckney Niles, IV Sentenced in U.S. District Court
|U.S. Attorney’s Office January 31, 2013|
The United States Attorney’s Office announced that during a federal court session in Billings, on January 30, 2013, before Chief U.S. District Judge Richard F. Cebull, Amasa Pinckney Niles, IV, a 41-year-old resident of Billings, appeared for sentencing. Niles was sentenced to a term of:
- Prison: 151 months
- Special assessment: $300
- Supervised release: five years
Niles was sentenced in connection with his guilty plea to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, possession with the intent to distribute methamphetamine, and distribution of methamphetamine.
In an offer of proof filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Marcia K. Hurd, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:
Niles came to the attention of law enforcement officers as part of a larger drug case. Niles was identified as a person who purchased large amounts of methamphetamine from Las Vegas on behalf of supplier Howard Bonifant in Billings to distribute to his distributor network here. Niles became involved through Sheila Coffman, as the two were dating and distributing together. Others also identified Niles as a distribution source from Bonifant. Niles and Coffman were getting the methamphetamine from several of Bonifant’s runners beginning in June 2009. Niles received significantly more than several pounds from each of the suppliers during the time he was involved. His involvement ended in June of 2010 when he went to prison for shooting a person in Billings. Niles resold the methamphetamine to others who have identified him as their supplier.
Bonifant and Coffman both pled guilty to federal charges and have been sentenced.
Because there is no parole in the federal system, the “truth in sentencing” guidelines mandate that Niles will likely serve all of the time imposed by the court. In the federal system, Niles does have the opportunity to earn a sentence reduction for “good behavior.” However, this reduction will not exceed 15 percent of the overall sentence.
The investigation was a cooperative effort between the Billings Big Sky Safe Streets Task Force and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.