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Grand Jury Charges Galesburg Man with Possession of Crack Cocaine with Intent to Distribute

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 22, 2008

Peoria, Ill. - Rodger A. Heaton, U.S. Attorney for the Central District of Illinois, announced that a federal grand jury today charged a Galesburg, Illinois man with possessing more than 50 grams of crack cocaine with intent to distribute on May 12, 2008. Wesley Mooney, 34, was previously charged in a federal criminal complaint filed on May 14, 2008.

According to the affidavit filed in support of the criminal complaint, law enforcement officers received information about a vehicle traveling from Galesburg to Peoria to purchase crack cocaine on May 12, 2008. Officers with the Peoria Area Metropolitan Enforcement Group established surveillance of the vehicle which traveled from Galesburg to Peoria, where it parked in front of a Peoria business. Officers observed Mooney as he allegedly got into another vehicle, then returned to his vehicle. Illinois State Police stopped Mooney’s vehicle for speeding in Knox County as he traveled westbound on Interstate 74. Following a search of the vehicle, officers located approximately 63.2 grams of suspected crack cocaine wrapped in a coat on the back seat.

Mooney made his initial appearance in federal court in Peoria before U.S. District Judge Michael M. Mihm on May 14, 2008. Mooney waived preliminary and detention hearings and the case was bound over to the grand jury. Mooney remains in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.

The charges are the result of an investigation by the Peoria Area Metropolitan Enforcement Group and the Peoria County Sheriff’s Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Greggory R. Walters is prosecuting the case.

If convicted, the maximum statutory penalty for possession of more than 50 grams of crack cocaine with intent to distribute is a mandatory minimum 10 years to life imprisonment. If a defendant has one prior felony drug conviction, the mandatory minimum is 20 years in prison; with two or more prior felony drug convictions, the penalty, if convicted, is mandatory life imprisonment.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment is merely an accusation; the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

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