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Press Release

California Drug Dealer to Federal Prison for Iowa Meth Conspiracy

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa
Convicted felon coordinated transport of pounds of meth, marijuana and cocaine from California to Iowa for distribution

A man who conspired to distribute methamphetamine was sentenced August 8, 2019, to 14 years in federal prison. 

Michael Halstead, 32, originally from the Sacramento, California area, but most recently residing in Fort Dodge, Iowa, received the prison term after a February 28, 2019, guilty plea to conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and illegal possession of ammunition.  Halstead was previously convicted in California of felony transport of marijuana in 2006 and felony burglary in 2010.  

At the plea hearing, Halstead admitted that from about August 2016 through November 2018, he was involved in a conspiracy that distributed more than seven pounds of methamphetamine in the Fort Dodge and Webster County areas.  Halstead arranged for his mother, other family members and friends to transport methamphetamine, marijuana and cocaine from California to Iowa by car and train.  In 2017, law enforcement made three one ounce buys of methamphetamine from Halstead.  In 2018, law enforcement seized over 30 grams of methamphetamine, 30 grams of cocaine, ecstasy pills, $6,981, and well over 100 rounds of 9mm ammunition.         

Halstead was sentenced in Sioux City by United States District Court Chief Judge Leonard T. Strand.  Halstead was sentenced to 168 months’ imprisonment.  He must also serve a 5-year term of supervised release after the prison term.  There is no parole in the federal system.  Halstead remains in custody of the United States Marshal until he can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Shawn S. Wehde and was investigated by the Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement, Webster County Sheriff’s Office, Fort Dodge Police Department, Iowa Division of Criminalistics Investigation, and the Drug Enforcement Administration. 

Court file information at

The case file number is 18-3046.  Follow us on Twitter @USAO_NDIA.

Updated August 13, 2019

Drug Trafficking