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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, June 21, 2019

Drug Conspiracy Convictions of Former Fresno Deputy Police Chief Affirmed on Appeal

FRESNO, Calif. — The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the convictions of former Fresno deputy police chief Keith Foster, 55, for criminal conspiracies involving heroin and marijuana, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced today.

On May 23, 2017, a federal jury in Fresno found Foster guilty of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute heroin and conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute marijuana. On November 13, 2017, U.S. District Judge Anthony W. Ishii sentenced Foster to four years in prison. Foster then filed an appeal, challenging his two criminal convictions. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected Foster’s claims and upheld his convictions.

The court found that Foster’s “phone calls and text messages with co-conspirators … sufficiently demonstrated Foster’s role in the conspiracy to distribute heroin.” Foster discussed heroin types, prices and other details with a supplier. The court also found that Foster’s calls with his nephew “sufficiently established his role in the conspiracy to distribute marijuana.” When Foster’s nephew was arrested with 6 pounds of marijuana in the trunk of his car, Foster said that he could have provided “cover” for him if he had been asked, and he also said that he would see what his “narc guys” could do for the nephew.

This case was the product of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Melanie L. Alsworth and Henry Z. Carbajal III prosecuted the case.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Press Release Number: 
1:15-cr-104 AWI
Updated June 21, 2019