A member of a Billings skinhead group convicted earlier this year of violating the civil rights of racial minorities pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court to a charge of distributing marijuana.
Jeremiah C. Skidmore, now serving eight years and four months on the civil rights conviction, admitted that he delivered up to 15 pounds of marijuana between the summer of 1998 and December 2000.
He initially was named in a broader conspiracy involving 10 other defendants charged with money laundering and distributing more than 300 pounds of marijuana.
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Jim Seykora, investigators contacted one of the suppliers, and the supplier admitted that Skidmore had received marijuana several times.
Sentencing for Skidmore has not been set. He was returned to jail immediately after the hearing.
In other cases before U.S. District Judge Richard Cebull on Wednesday, Kevin Shook, 45, pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiracy to possess methamphetamine with intent to distribute. The Sioux City, Iowa, man admitted responsibility for an amount in excess of 500 grams, which translates to a minimum mandatory sentence of 10 years. There are 28.4 grams in an ounce.
According to the indictment, Shook and his brother were established as a source of supply for a truck driver who made deliveries of methamphetamine in Billings. Seykora said the evidence would have included recorded phone calls of drug discussions and tapes from body wires used by government informants.
Shook will be sentenced Aug. 29 and remains in jail until then.
Thomas Kevin Jones, 28, of Glendive pleaded guilty to conspiracy and two counts of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. He admitted responsibility for more than 50 grams of the dangerously addictive drug during the conspiracy that began in late summer 2000 and ended July 23, 2001. The indictment said the scheme involved moving methamphetamine and marijuana from Billings to Glendive for redistribution in northeastern Montana.
Seykora said evidence against Jones includes recordings of informant purchases and telephone records.
Jones will remain free while awaiting sentencing on Aug. 29.
Two Billings men, Barye Todd Clay, 39, and Charles G. Maxwell, 28, pleaded guilty to a charge of possession of child pornography. In separate hearings before the judge, they admitted downloading sexually explicit pictures of children from the Internet. Their house and computer were searched in March 2001 when the FBI received a tip that the defendants were viewing the illegal material.
Clay admitted that he knew downloading the images was illegal. Maxwell said he didn't know.
The pair also pleaded guilty to a forfeiture count that gives the government possession of all computers and computer equipment used in the crime.
Clay and Maxwell will be sentenced Sept. 10 and remain free until then.