On August 27, a U.S. district court judge sentenced a 33-year-old Illinois woman to 13 years in federal prison for possession and distribution of methamphetamine. The defendant, a Harrisburg resident, was additionally assessed a $400 fine and sentenced to eight years of supervised release.
According to federal prosecutors, the defendant and her co-defendant manufactured and delivered methamphetamine in Jackson, Saline and Williamson Counties from January 2015 until April 2017. The court found that she was responsible for distributing more than a kilogram of crystal meth and possessing over 200 grams of pseudoephedrine, which is a decongestant commonly used to manufacture meth. She pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute more than 50 grams of methamphetamine and conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine.
Her co-defendant, a 47-year-old Elkville man, pleaded guilty to drug charges earlier in August. The court found him responsible for distributing over a kilogram of crystal meth and possessing nearly 187 grams of pseudoephedrine. He was sentenced to a federal prison for 16 years and seven months. The man also was assessed a $400 fine and sentenced to serve eight years of supervised release after serving his prison time.
As this case demonstrates, drug defendants in Illinois can receive harsh sentences if they are convicted. However, there are several strategies that a defense lawyer could potentially use to get a client's charges reduced or dismissed. For example, if police overstepped their authority during search and seizure, the case could be thrown out of court. In other circumstances, it may be possible for an attorney to negotiate a plea bargain that allows the defendant to plead guilty to reduced charges. This could lead to a more lenient sentence.
Source: WPSD, "Woman gets 13 years on federal meth conviction in southern Illinois," August 27, 2018