Lawyer and Doctor Charged in Federal Court with Marijuana Distribution Conspiracy
JUN 22--SACRAMENTO-- DEA Assistant Special Agent in Charge (ASAC) Gordon Taylor and United States Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced today that a federal grand jury returned a two-count indictment charging Dale C. Schafer, 50, and Marion P. Fry, 48, of Greenwood, California, with one count of conspiracy to distribute marijuana, to manufacture at least 100 plants of marijuana; and to distribute at least 100 marijuana plants, as well as with one count of manufacturing of at least 100 marijuana plants.
ASAC Taylor stated: “We will not turn a blind eye to serious and flagrant disregard of federal law. There may be those who think they can disregard the Court and Congress. DEA will not be among them.”
“It cannot be any more clear: The sale and distribution of marijuana are violations of federal law. There are no exceptions. The United States Supreme Court unanimously upheld the federal ban on marijuana four years ago in its Oakland Cannabis Club decision, and reaffirmed federal jurisdiction in the Raich case two weeks ago,” said United States Attorney McGregor Scott.
Schafer was arrested at his home in Greenwood and Fry was arrested after leaving her home in Greenwood at about 10:00 a.m. this morning without incident.
The two defendants were arraigned on the charges this afternoon and entered pleas of not guilty. Each defendant was released on a $25,000 unsecured bond.
This case is the product of an extensive/joint investigation by the DEA and the Western El Dorado County Narcotics Enforcement Task Force.
The indictment alleges that Mr. Dale Schafer, an attorney, and his wife, Dr. Marion Fry, conspired together to sell dried marijuana, as well as to grow and sell at least 100 plants of marijuana. According to court documents previously filed, the couple ran their distribution operation through their store-front business in Cool, California. Although the case may involve more than 100 plants, the number "100" is mentioned in the grand jury's indictment because it is an amount set forth in the federal statute that triggers certain penalty provisions.
The federal law prohibits the possession, manufacture, and sale of marijuana. Under federal law, marijuana remains in a category of controlled substances which have no medical value.
According to Assistant United States Attorney Anne Pings, who is prosecuting the case, if convicted, the maximum penalty under federal law for each offense is a mandatory minimum of five years imprisonment, a maximum of 40 years imprisonment, and a $2,000,000 fine, and a four-year period of supervised release to follow the sentence of imprisonment.The charges are only allegations and the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.