Six Charged in South Suburban Drug Sweep
|FBI Chicago November 23, 2010|
Six south suburban men were charged with operating a drug distribution network which purchased and re-sold wholesale and retail quantities of cocaine and crack cocaine in and around the Village of Robbins, announced Patrick J. Fitzgerald, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Robert D. Grant, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI); and Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart.
Five of the men were arrested yesterday, without incident, in a pre-dawn sweep conducted by FBI special agents, Cook County Sheriff's investigators, and local police officers, after being charged in criminal complaints filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago with violating federal drug laws. A sixth defendant remains at large and is now the subject of a nationwide manhunt.
The charges announced today were the result of an 18-month, multi-jurisdictional investigation code-named "Operation Changin' Boots," which targeted the distribution of controlled substances, specifically powder and crack cocaine, in southern Cook County, Illinois. The investigation incorporated the use of court-authorized monitoring of telephones used by the targets of the investigation in the furtherance of their operation and undercover operatives making controlled purchases of illicit drugs.
Those arrested today are identified as:
JEREMY JACKSON, age 27, of 13400 South Monticello, Robbins, IL.
MARCUS JONES, age 29, of 13603 South Monticello, Robbins, IL.
TAVARIS McGREGOR, age 33, of 12425 South Troop, Calumet Park, IL.
JEFFREY D. MOSES, age 33, of 13534 South Monticello, Robbins, IL.
BRUCE D. WHITTLER, age 31, of 13534 South Monticello, Robbins, IL.
The sixth defendant, who remains at large, is identified as JOHN PAYNE, age 29, of 13630 South Hamlin, Robbins, IL.
During the course of the investigation, in excess of ½ kilogram of cocaine was recovered, along with $7,000 in cash representing suspected drug proceeds and two weapons.
Those arrested yesterday appeared before Magistrate Judge Nan Nolan in Chicago Monday afternoon, at which time they were formally charged. All five were ordered held without bond, pending their next court appearance, which are scheduled for later today and Wednesday. Until then, they will be held at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago. If convicted of the charges filed against them, the six defendants face varying penalties ranging from five years' incarceration to a maximum of life in prison.
This case was investigated by a joint federal-state task force, comprised of FBI special agents, investigators from the Cook County Sheriff's Department, and officers from the Joliet and Orland Park Police Departments.
The public is reminded that a complaint is not evidence of guilt and that all defendants in a criminal case are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Copies of the criminal complaints filed in this case are available from the Chicago FBI's press office at (312) 829-1199.