Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Texas
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, January 27, 2016
Militia Man Ordered to Federal Prison
BROWNSVILLE, Texas – A 46-year-old member of a citizen group known as “Rusty’s Rangers” or “Rusty’s Regulators” has been sentenced for illegal possession of a firearm, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson. John Frederick Foerster, of Brownsville, was a convicted felon and pleaded guilty to possession of a 7.62 x 39 mm pistol on March 25, 2015.
Today, U.S. District Judge Andrew S. Hanen ordered Foerster to serve 30 months in federal prison to be immediately followed by three years of supervised release.
According to court records, Rusty’s Rangers consisted of citizens who mounted armed patrols in the Rio Grande area allegedly in search of and to possibly apprehend aliens attempting to enter the U.S. illegally. Foerster was observed in possession of the firearm by Border Patrol (BP) agents on Aug. 29, 2014. On that date, a BP agent thought Foerster was an armed alien smuggler and fired upon him. Foerster was not injured.
The Investigation led to the discovery that Foerster had been twice convicted of burglary and was, therefore, prohibited from possessing a firearm.
Foerster will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.
The investigation was conducted by the FBI, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Cameron County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney William Hagen is prosecuting the case.