James 'Opie' Roe -- #04778-046

5 Years -- "Possession of a Firearm While in the Commission of a Drug Sale"

James Roe, prisoner of the drug war
My name is James Opie Roe. I am a prisoner of America's War on Drugs. I am 34 years old, currently serving a 5 year sentence in federal prison for possession of a firearm while in the commission of a drug sale.

These charges and the conviction that followed have ruined not only my life, but it has affected my mother and daughters. My wife has divorced me and I have lost everything that meant anything to me!

I had been approached by a person (a federal agent) who asked me to deliver some marijuana to his cousin (federal agent #2). I was a logger by trade for the last ten years but was out of work at the time.

I was told by Agent #1 that if I would deliver the marijuana to his cousin, Agent #2 , he would split $3,600 with me. I asked the agent why he didn't deliver the marijuana himself. He told me that he owed his cousin money.

I was arrested and the federal government prosecuted me because the state could not have gotten a conviction based upon two federal agent's testimony. I plead guilty to possession of a firearm because I believed at the time that I had committed a crime by carrying one. I am hoping that Bailey v. United States might bring me some sentencing relief.

There are people in the federal penal system that have been convicted of manslaughter, child molestation, child abuse, and rape that are doing far less time than I am. What has happened to America's sense of fairness? I was brought up to believe that these were serious crimes.

I haven't given up hope and believe that America will open their eyes to the injustice the drug war is inflicting on her citizens.

We have James Opie's transcript of the Plea Proceedings heard in Helena, Montana's U.S. Courthouse before Judge Lovell. Page 13 reads:

".... He also would indicate that he did in fact wear and carry the handgun during and in relation to the drug trafficking crime which has been described to you. And last but not least, Your Honor, I'm going beyond my two points, my third point would be that his supplier in this particular transaction was also a government agent.

Other than that, the statement of facts is accurate.

THE COURT: And with that caveat, then, Mr. Roe, you agree with the government's summary?


THE COURT: Very well...