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Chicago Cocaine Dealer Sentenced to Life in Prison for Conspiracy to Distribute Crack in Quad Cities

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 5, 2009

Rock Island, Ill. – A Chicago man, Johnny William Lane, was sentenced today to serve the rest of his life in prison for conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine in the Quad Cities area, as announced by Rodger A. Heaton, U.S. Attorney for the Central District of Illinois. Lane’s criminal history includes three prior felony drug convictions, in Cook county, making him eligible for the mandatory term of life imprisonment. Following today’s sentencing before U.S. District Judge Michael M. Mihm, Lane was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service. Lane has been in federal law enforcement custody since his arrest on federal charges in December 2007.

On September 3, 2008, a jury convicted Lane, also known as “Stretch,” of conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine from April 2006 to September 14, 2007, and possession of 50 grams or more of crack cocaine with intent to distribute. During the two-day trial, the government presented evidence that during the conspiracy, Lane received up to one kilogram of cocaine on a weekly basis.

Three co-defendants in the case have each entered pleas of guilty to participating in the conspiracy. Kim Lane, a/k/a “Swift,” of Chicago, was sentenced on December 22, 2008, to a term of 121 months in prison. He was ordered to report to the federal Bureau of Prisons on February 2, 2009, to begin serving his sentence. Shawn Barnes, of Chicago, was sentenced on September 25, 2008, to 51 months in prison, and Ray Harper, a/k/a “Spanky,” of Rock Island, is scheduled for sentencing on January 23, 2009.

The charges resulted from a multi-jurisdictional task force investigation by the Quad Cities Federal Gang Task Force, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Rock Island Police Department. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sara L. Darrow and Michael D. McCoy with the cooperation of the Rock Island County State’s Attorney’s Office.

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