Former Aspen resident Montgomery Chitty was convicted yesterday of conspiracy to distribute five kilos of cocaine in one of the wildest drug ring stories involving a ski town in recent memory. 61-year old Chitty is looking at a minimum of 20 years in prison, with a possibility of a life sentence due to a prior marijuana conviction. Chitty is the 9th person to be convicted for importing coke from California to Aspen, with witnesses maintaining he bought and sold over 200 kilos of it between 2002 and 2010.
Chitty wasn't just some scumbag drug dealer, however. He maintained friendships with three generations of Aspen-area sheriffs, Hunter S. Thompson and even 60 Minutes' Ed Bradley. He served on Gary Hart's senatorial and presidential campaigns and spent a stint at the Democratic National Committee. Chitty maintained that he sold Navajo rugs to California drug dealers but never bought drugs off them.
Chitty was ultimately brought down by the DEA with the help of several of the other defendants in the drug ring, who got plea deals for their testimony. Chitty described some of them in court as an "old fox" and an "ice box," and argued that there was no concrete evidence he bought or sold cocaine.
· Chitty convicted for role in cocaine trafficking ring [Aspen Daily News]