Chicago Criminal Defense Blog

Illinois man faces drug charges after arrest

A man is facing drug charges after he was arrested by the Joliet Police Department. The 27-year-old man was arrested on Aug. 14, and he was charged with eight criminal offenses mostly related to drugs. The police accuse the man of dealing cocaine. He is charged with one Class X felony charge, accusing him of unlawful possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver. Specifically, police claim that the man was found on Aug. 12 with an amount of cocaine between 15 and 100 grams.

The man was also charged with possession of a gun without a firearm owner's identification card, which is required under state gun laws. The man had .357-caliber ammunition with him, and although he previously had the required card registered with the state police, it was not with him when the ammunition was found.

What actions could lead to credit card fraud charges?

Sometimes, people throw around the term "fraud" as an insult to someone who may not have met their expectations. While some people on the receiving end of this insult may simply rebuff the comment and move on, you may not have that ability if authorities believe that you committed fraud.

Any type of criminal fraud can have serious repercussions, and if authorities suspect that you committed credit card fraud, you likely know that you could be in a world of trouble. However, you do not have to immediately feel guilty because you have the right to defend against criminal allegations. Gaining information on the crime of which authorities have accused you may be beneficial.

App companies routinely hand over private data to cops

Illinois readers who are concerned about privacy issues should be aware that many tech and app companies readily share customer information with law enforcement agencies without a warrant, according to a report by Government Technology magazine. These companies include Ring, Lyft, Uber, Netflix, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Venmo.

According to the report, law enforcement officers routinely ask people for footage from their Ring video doorbell systems, which send videos of suspicious activity to a consumer's smartphone. If a consumer refuses, authorities can get the video directly from Ring, which is owned by Amazon. In fact, Amazon is so interested in police having access to Ring footage that it is urging law enforcement agencies to join community boards across the country so that they can persuade consumers to hand over incriminating videos.

Diversion pleas may surface on criminal background checks

People in Illinois who are accused of certain types of crimes may agree to settle the issue through a diversion plea. In these circumstances, the person pleads guilty and agrees to other circumstances, such as attending a program or paying a fine. As a result, the plea is not considered to be a conviction under state law. However, after a decision by the 7th Circuit court, these pleas may be considered "convictions" and reported in some types of criminal background checks for the purpose of employment.

Background checks are regulated by the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act. Under the law, arrests more than seven years old may not be reported, but there is no similar time limit on reporting past convictions. In one case involving the law, the federal appeals court interpreted "conviction" as any case disposition including a guilty plea, even if the charges were dismissed under a state diversion plan. The case emerged after a background check company reported a woman's 20-year-old diversion plea on a battery charge to a potential landlord, despite the fact that she had no conviction under Illinois law after successfully completing a brief supervision sentence.

Man pleads guilty to charges related to online drug distribution

A man who distributed fentanyl in Illinois and throughout the country pleaded guilty on July 16 to all charges against him. The 34-year-old man was known as "The Drug Llama" online, where he sold the drugs on the dark web's "Dream Market," a place people went to get illegal substances.

The man was taken into custody in San Diego. In January, he was indicted along with a 31-year-old woman who was also accused of maintaining the account with him. The man was charged with one count of misbranding drugs, one count of selling counterfeit drugs, five counts of illegally distributing fentanyl and one count of conspiracy to distribute fentanyl. He will be sentenced on Oct. 29.

Effects of Illinois marijuana legalization

Starting in 2020, marijuana for recreational use for adults who are at least 21 will be legal in Illinois. The Illinois Cannabis Regulation and Taxation Act was signed by the governor on June 25. Illinois is now the eleventh state to make recreational marijuana legal. There are also medical marijuana laws in 33 states.

There is one major difference in the law in Illinois and those passed in other states. Criminal convictions for possessing under 30 grams of marijuana can be expunged under the new law. Furthermore, some taxes from marijuana sales are supposed to go toward groups who suffer adverse effects from enforcement of drug laws.

Several people accused of drug crimes after arrests

Five people have been accused of drug charges in Illinois after a police investigation of one bar in Rockford. According to local police, they received multiple complaints about drug distribution activity taking place on Rockford's North Madison Street, including at one local pub, Buster's Bar and Grill. A 38-year-old woman who works at the bar and lives on the block was investigated by police in the month before the arrests. They say that she was identified as playing a role in the alleged drug dealing activity, and at least one of the drug sales took place at the bar.

The other four people were accused by police of buying or selling drugs as part of the same activity. Police searched several homes in the area; they say that they confiscated two guns as well as substances they believe to be cannabis, cocaine and hydrocodone. In addition to the 38-year-old woman, a 26-year-old man, a 33-year-old man, and a 43-year-old man were arrested. Police said that they are still looking for another 35-year-old man. While the woman was charged with both possession of a controlled substance and delivery, two of the men were accused of possession of a controlled substance. The third man arrested was also charged with unlawful use of a weapon given his criminal record as well as possession with the intent to deliver cocaine and cannabis.

Drug addiction can cause financial hardships, legal concerns

Addiction is a serious disease that can have adverse effects on the user and his or her family. You may understand this more than most because you love someone who is struggling with drug addiction, and even though you want to help, you may find yourself feeling at odds about what to do.

In particular, you may not have realized what a financial toll your loved one's addiction would have on you. After all, you're not the one using or trying to obtain the substance. Still, your support of your loved one may have landed you in a difficult financial spot.

Former MillerCoors VP sentenced for wire fraud

A former vice president of Illinois-based MillerCoors was sentenced to three and a half years in prison on May 16 for defrauding the brewer out of about $8.6 million between 2003 and 2013. The 60-year-old man entered a guilty plea to one count of wire fraud as part of a plea agreement in May 2016, but his sentencing was delayed until the cases of seven other individuals involved in the scheme were resolved.

The single count of wire fraud could have resulted in a prison sentence of 20 years. Court papers reveal that the man received more lenient treatment because he provided what prosecutors referred to as substantial cooperation. The judge passing sentence also remarked that the man seemed to be genuinely remorseful. The U.S. attorney prosecuting the case is said to have asked the judge to send the man to prison for 64 months.

Bill introduced to legalize recreational marijuana in Illinois

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker made the legalization of marijuana for recreational use a key part of his 2018 gubernatorial campaign, and he has made good on this election promise by supporting a bill that would allow adults over the age of 21 in the state to grow up to five plants in their homes or purchase the drug from licensed dispensaries. The measure was submitted to the Illinois General Assembly on May 7. The governor says that he hopes to be able to sign the bill into law by January 2020.

Passage of the bill could be a financial aid to a state struggling to cope with large budget deficits. The legislation would allow the state to tax marijuana sales at rates ranging from 10 to 25% based on the THC level of the marijuana sold, and cities and counties would be able to add their own taxes of up to 3 and 0.5%, respectively. The state's general revenue fund would receive at least 35% of the money raised. Experts believe that legalization will generate about $170 million in revenue each year.

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