News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 17, 2007
Contact: Joanna Zoltay
Number: 312-886-259

Kankakee Man Sentenced to Over 12 Years on Drug and Weapon Charges

JUL17 -- (Kankakee, IL) A Kankakee resident was recently sentenced to over 12 years in federal prison for distributing cocaine and illegally possessing a firearm. Chief Judge Michael P. McCusky sentenced Frank J. Higgins in U. S. District Court at Urbana, concluding a long term drug investigation that began in late 2003. After serving his prison sentence, Higgins is subject to eight years of supervised release.

The investigation was initiated by the Kankakee Area Metropolitan Enforcement Group (KAMEG) and developed information that Frank J. Higgins was a major source of cocaine in the Kankakee area. The investigation showed that kilograms of cocaine sold by Higgins were broken down to personal use amounts and commonly re-sold to users in the Kankakee, Bradley and Bourbonnais areas. KAMEG enlisted the assistance of the DEA to further the investigation, and Kankakee county prosecutors conferred with federal prosecutors to determine the best venue for the case. Higgins was arrested in November 2006 after he delivered one pound of cocaine during a KAMEG/DEA undercover operation. A subsequent search warrant served at Higgin’s residence resulted in the seizure of approximately 3 kilograms of cocaine, a gun and more than $100,000 in US currency.

Sheriff Tim Bukowski, KAMEG Policy Chairman, said that the investigation epitomized the drug distribution chain. “Information developed from the arrests of persons using cocaine lead to their dealer, who lead to their supplier and ultimately to a major source of cocaine in our area,” stated Sheriff Bukowski.

“This investigation is a great example of great law enforcement partnerships,” stated Gary G. Olenkiewicz, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA’s Chicago Field Division. “We are committed to keeping criminals like Mr. Higgins from harming our communities with illegal drugs and will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to make our neighborhoods safe.”

KAMEG is a local drug enforcement task force comprising of officers from the Illinois State Police, Kankakee County Sheriff’s Department, Kankakee Police Department, the DEA and the Kankakee County State’s Attorneys Office.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United State Attorney Eugene Miller, from the Central District of Illinois.