ALBANY, N.Y. – A 46-year-old Saratoga County Sheriff's Deputy was arrested and charged Friday with attempting to aid and abet possession of cocaine.
Charles E. Fuller of Corinth was charged Friday by criminal complaint with attempting to aid and abet the possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine, announced United States Attorney Richard S. Hartunian and Andrew W. Vale, Special Agent-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Albany Division.
Fuller was arrested Friday at the Saratoga County Sheriff's Office and appeared before a United States Magistrate at 3 p.m.
Saratoga County Sheriff Michael H. Zurlo said Fuller looked “kind of dismayed” while he was being arrested.
“I'm disappointed,” Zurlo said. “This doesn't reflect the men and women of the department. I have a great staff here.”
Zurlo said he was disappointed in Fuller, and he promises to never tolerate corruption in his department.
“Our promise to the people of Saratoga County is that we will continue to work diligently to ensure that every member of this office deserves the respect and trust of our community,” he said.
Zurlo said the FBI told him of the investigation when he took office in January.
“They apprised me as to what was going on and kept in contact with me,” he explained. “They had my full cooperation throughout the last two months in regards to the investigation.”
The FBI, working with a confidential source, arranged for a controlled delivery by Fuller of what was purported to be 250 grams of cocaine, according to court documents.
The FBI said Fuller met the source in Albany County on Thursday with an understanding that the source was carrying one kilogram of cocaine and money for his involvement.
Court documents show Fuller's involvement was to drive and protect the source from Albany County to Warren County after he picked up the cocaine.
Federal agents set up surveillance in the area of the meeting locations for that ride and provided the informant with recording devices.
“I know. You get $4 a gram so we got like a quarter a key here so you got hooked up. Ok. Alright so. Here it is so where do you want it?” asked the informant.
“In my greedy little hand,” replied Fuller, according to the FBI.
Zurlo said no other officers were involved in drug trafficking.
“I've been in contact with the FBI over the course of this investigation and feel confident that there are no other members of the department involved in this,” he said.
Court documents show the FBI conducted a similar sting with Fuller on February 19 but with less money and drugs than was used in Thursday's operation.
Fuller was a 24-year veteran of the Saratoga County Sheriff's Office and president of the Saratoga County Deputy's Association.
He is on unpaid administrative leave until the court process is complete. Fuller is scheduled to appear in federal court for a detention hearing March 3 at 2 p.m.
If convicted, Fuller faces a maximum of 40 years in prison, a mandatory minimum period of imprisonment of 5 years and a maximum fine of $5,000,000.