SEVEN SOUTHERN ILLINOIS RESIDENTS INDICTED IN CONSPIRACY TO MANUFACTURE METHAMPHETAMINE
Seven southern Illinois residents were indicted on June 7, 2011, in a third superseding indictment, charging conspiracy to manufacture methamphetamine, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today.
On June 9, 2011, Holly R. Phelps, a/k/a “Holly Libbert,” 26, of Marion, Andrew J. McCann, 24, of Murphysboro, and Joshua B. Jordan, 20, of Grand Tower, appeared in federal court in Benton, on the one-count third superseding indictment charging conspiracy to distribute more than 500 grams of methamphetamine. William Wohlwend, 34, and Michael J. Crowden, 26, both of Gorham, Alan Michael Cain, 18, of Grand Tower, and Patrick McLane, 29, of Wolf Lake, are scheduled to make their initial appearance in federal court on June 27, 2011. Nine co-defendants have made appearances and been arraigned in federal court on this case. Two additional co-defendants, Rodney D. Phelps, age 39, of Grand Tower, and Geoffrey A. Phelps, age 31, of Marion, are currently fugitives.
The conspiracy offense occurred between 2009 and April 6, 2011, in Jackson, Union, Randolph, and Williamson Counties. The offense carries a penalty of a term of imprisonment from 10 years to life, a fine of not more than $10 million, and a term of supervised release of at least 5 years. Under the law, a defendant is presumed to be innocent of a charge until proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt to the satisfaction of a jury.
The ongoing investigation is being conducted by the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office, Murphysboro Police Department, Union County Sheriff’s Office, and Drug Enforcement Administration, pursuant to those agencies’ participation in the Project Safe Neighborhoods Initiative. Project Safe Neighborhoods is a joint and cooperative effort of local, state, and federal law enforcement, and state and federal prosecuting authorities, aimed at ridding communities of illegal drugs and guns. The Jackson County States Attorney’s Office also assisted during the investigation.
The case is assigned to Assistant United States Attorney Amanda A. Robertson for prosecution.