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Chicago man sentenced in drug trafficking case

An illinoiss man has been sentenced to nearly 9 years in prison for possession of drugs with the intent to distribute and carrying a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking enterprise. The sentence, which was handed down on Dec. 6, comes about a year after the 58-year-old East Chicago resident was taken into custody by police investigating a drug distribution organization that allegedly used a social club in Calumet as its base of operations.

Court documents reveal that police took action after Drug Enforcement Administration agents intercepted a text message exchange between the man and a person of interest in the Calumet social club investigation in September 2016. Police say that the man distributed crack cocaine to the drug trafficking organization's customers that he had ordered from the social club using coded text messages. The intercepted text exchange is said to have been over an order to buy $450 worth of the drug.

Police say that the man met with the person of interest in the social club investigation twice on the day of his arrest, and he is said to have been in possession of both crack cocaine and a handgun when he was taken into custody by officers of the East Chicago Police Department. Reports suggest that an analysis of the man's phone calls and text messages provided additional evidence for prosecutors.

The penalties for narcotics possession and distribution can be severe, and prosecutors often have compelling evidence at their disposal in these cases. However, jury trials are expensive and always involve a degree of risk; experienced criminal defense attorneys may remind prosecutors of this during plea negotiations. Prosecutors are expected to produce results, and they may be willing to reduce drug charges or make concessions on sentencing in return for a speedy settlement.

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