Man Convicted in Blackfeet Case Pleads Guilty to Escape

Gary Conti pleaded guilty to the charge Wednesday in federal court in Great Falls

By Dillon Tabish

HELENA — A man who fled from a minimum-security prison where he was serving a five-year sentence for defrauding a Montana Indian tribe has pleaded guilty to escape.

Gary Conti pleaded guilty to the charge Wednesday in federal court in Great Falls. He did not have a plea agreement.

Conti went missing last October from the Federal Correctional Institution in Englewood, Colorado. Conti had been convicted on more than two dozen charges related to bankruptcy fraud and kicking back money to leaders of a Blackfeet tribal youth program.

Officers spotted Conti in a stolen Jeep in Bozeman and pursued him on Interstate 90. He crashed into a parked patrol vehicle and was seriously injured.

U.S. District Judge Brian Morris set a sentencing date for Oct. 27. The escape charge carries a maximum five-year prison sentence.

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