Former SC trooper found guilty after providing security for drug deal

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – A former South Carolina Highway Patrolman was convicted of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance in a California courtroom Wednesday.

John David McGaha, 36, of Myrtle Beach, was one of six suspects charged with conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance and conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance as part of an indictment filed March 24, 2015, according to Attorney Brian Stretch with the Northern District of California.

McGaha was a state trooper with the South Carolina Highway Patrol at the time of the crime. McGaha was accused of agreeing to accept $5,000 in exchange for providing security during a planned drug deal.

A press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of California says McGaha agreed to protect a drug transaction, telling the suspected dealers the less he knew of the deal the better, but that he would be present at the transaction in his marked Highway Patrol car.

McGaha was later questioned by FBI agents and he admitted he met with the co-conspirators, that he was asked to be present in a parking lot while the drug deal was conducted, that he knew the transaction was illegal, and that he accepted $5,000 to be present.

After a four day trial, the jury found McGaha guilty of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance. McGaha is free pending his sentencing which is scheduled for August 23 in San Francisco, CA.

Each of the other co-conspirators pleaded guilty to charges related to the conspiracy, confirms Stretch.

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