Appeals court affirms sentence for meth dealer

The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday upheld the conviction and sentence of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe's former public defender.

Travis Whirlwind Soldier, 29, was convicted of conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. He was serving as the tribe's public defender at the time of his crimes.

"According to multiple witnesses, Whirlwind Soldier frequently bought, sold, traded, delivered, and shared methamphetamine and other drugs, in some cases using his position as public defender to persuade others to cooperate with him," the court noted in its unanimous decision.

Whirlwind Soldier was sentenced to more than 15 years in prison.

Get the Story:
Former Public Defender's Drug Conviction Upheld (AP 8/27)

Get the Decision:
US v. Soldier (August 24, 2007)

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Tribe's public defender held on meth charges (1/4)
Tribe's public defender charged in meth conspiracy (12/21)