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Associated Press, Published July 29 2010

New trial ordered in drug case

FARGO — A federal judge has ordered a new trial and postponed sentencing for a Bismarck man convicted on two counts in a major drug conspiracy case.

A jury in January found Donovan Slagg guilty of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute controlled substances, and aiding and abetting in the conspiracy. He faces a mandatory life prison sentence.

U.S. District Judge Ralph Erickson says Slagg deserves a new trial on the aiding and abetting charge because of an error in jury instructions. Erickson has not ruled on a motion by prosecutors to reconsider the decision.

Slagg's sentencing on the conspiracy conviction, originally scheduled Wednesday, is changed to Sept. 23.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.