MISSOULA — A Bozeman man who admitted to trafficking cocaine after an investigation determined he received packages of cocaine and large amounts of cash was sentenced Thursday to eight years in prison and to seven years of supervised release, according to Acting U.S. Attorney Leif M. Johnson.
Luis Alberto Rocha, 38, pleaded guilty on Feb. 12 to conspiracy to distribute cocaine.
U.S. District Judge Dana L. Christensen presided. Rocha was detained.
In court documents filed in the case, the government alleged that in September 2019, the Missouri River Drug Task Force in Bozeman received information that Rocha was involved in the distribution of drugs, was moving a lot of weight and had a source of supply in Texas.
In April 2020, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service noticed packages scheduled for delivery to Rocha’s residence in Belgrade and to his former residence in Bozeman. The investigation determined that a total of 14 packages had been delivered from California, Texas and Arizona since July 2019.
In July 2020, the postal inspector searched two packages pursuant to search warrants and found $27,000 in currency in one package and $62,000 in currency in a second package. On Aug. 17, 2020, another package addressed to Rocha’s former Bozeman residence was searched pursuant to a warrant, and investigators found it contained about 6.5 pounds of cocaine.
The delivery of the package was delayed because of the investigation, and agents learned that someone checked on the status of the package more than 300 times from an internet provider address that was registered to Rocha.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy J. Racicot prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the FBI, Missouri River Drug Task Force and U.S. Postal Inspection Service.