Jodie Foster's Dad Convicted of Swindling Homebuyers
12/07/2011 AT 09:30 PM EST
Lucius Foster, a Sherman Oaks, Calif., building contractor, was convicted of 21 counts of grand theft and nine counts of contracting without a license – all misdemeanors. He faces up to 25 years in prison at his sentencing Thursday.
Foster was accused of collecting $5,000 down payments and promised 2,000-square-foot modular homes made from 40-foot Chinese shipping containers.
"Not one of these homes has ever been built in the city of Los Angeles," Deputy City Attorney Don Cocek told the jury. "It's all a big scam."
He called Foster, who had been soliciting customers since at least 2005, the "Bernie Madoff of Sherman Oaks."
Foster, who uses a walker and acted as his own attorney, insisted there was no scam and that he was trying to help solve the city's affordable-housing problem by building solar-heated three-bedroom, two-bath homes for less than $100,000.
Foster was born just months after her parents were divorced. The actress was raised by her mother – with little involvement by her father.