St. Pete detective arrested in FBI corruption investigation

TAMPA - The FBI says a detective with the St. Petersburg Police Department was taken into custody Wednesday in connection with a public corruption investigation.

Detective Anthony Foster was arrested Wednesday for wire fraud and interference with commerce by threats, after the FBI says he "intentionally used his status as an SPPD detective to exploit [a confidential informant's] fear of imprisonment to secure personal payments of cash and property totaling in excess of $8,000."

They say Foster collected gifts such as electronics, clothes, Nike Jordan shoes and even groceries bought with the man's food stamps.

St. Petersburg Chief of Police Charles Harmon, released this statement:

"The men and women of the police department work hard for this community each day, and some have given their lives in service as we witnessed earlier this year.  We will not tolerate or condone such behavior of our members, and we will hold them accountable."

The chief said he was devastated by the charges.  Foster was stoic and said little at his first appearance in Federal Court Wednesday.  He left with his lawyer and wife at his side and refused to comment. 

Foster was released on a $25,000 bond co-signed by his wife.  His release was conditional.  The judge ordered him to stay away from all victims and witnesses in the case and he's also required to surrender two of his firearms he keeps at home.

The homicide detective is expected back in court June 22.

Stay with ABC Action News and for the latest developments on this story.

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