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Press Release

Grand Jury Returns Indictments

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Wisconsin

MADISON, WIS. - A federal grand jury in the Western District of Wisconsin, sitting in Madison, returned the following indictments today.  You are advised that a charge is merely an accusation and that a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

Rockford Man Charged with Drug Crimes

Vincent Phillips, 41, Rockford, Illinois, is charged in an eight-count indictment with drug crimes involving methamphetamine, fentanyl, and cocaine.  The indictment alleges that on February 18, 2023, he possessed 50 grams or more of methamphetamine, fentanyl, and cocaine with intent to distribute.  The indictment alleges that on three occasions between April 4 and April 20, 2023, he distributed methamphetamine.  The indictment further alleges that two of the distributions involved 50 grams or more of the drug.  The indictment also alleges that on April 20, 2023, Phillips possessed cocaine with intent to distribute, and that he possessed 50 grams or more of methamphetamine with intent to distribute. 

If convicted, Phillips faces a mandatory minimum penalty of five years and a maximum of 40 years in prison on the four charges that allege the distribution or possession for distribution of 50 grams or more of methamphetamine.  The other four charges each carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.   

Phillips was arrested on April 20 and is being held at the Sauk County Jail. The charges against him are the result of an investigation by the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office and the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Kathryn Ginsberg is handling the prosecution.   

Two Mexican Nationals Charged with Illegally Reentering U.S.

In unrelated cases, two citizens of Mexico are charged with illegally reentering the United States.  Marcos Xelhua-Ponce, 30, is charged with illegally reentering the United States after having been deported.  The indictment alleges that he was found in the Western District of Wisconsin on February 15, 2023.  He was found in Dane County.

The second indictment charges Noe Mendoza-Caballero, 39, with reentering the United States after being removed.  The indictment alleges that Mendoza-Caballero was found in the Western District of Wisconsin on March 27, 2023.  He was found in Monroe County.

If convicted, Xelhua-Ponce faces a maximum penalty of two years in prison, and Mendoza-Caballero faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.  Immigration offenses may carry different maximum penalties based on the totality of circumstances in each case.  The charges against them are the result of investigations by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, with the participation of the U.S. Marshals Service in the investigation of Xelhua-Ponce.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Kathryn Ginsberg is handling the prosecution of Xelhua-Ponce and Assistant. U.S. Attorney Steven Anderson is handling the prosecution of Mendoza-Caballero.

Updated April 26, 2023

Topics
Drug Trafficking
Immigration