By Steve Elliott ~alapoet~ in News
Thursday, December 16, 2010 at 4:42 pm
|Photo: U.S. Attorney's Office|
|State and federal investigators seized these sacks of marijuana in a Chicago Heights warehouse|
The cannabis was found at a south suburban warehouse this month, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office, which claimed the pot was worth $22 million, reports Chicago Breaking News Center.
The warehouse raid came after Customs agents in Eagle Pass, Texas, came across a Union Pacific train headed for Chicago Heights carrying about 21,800 pounds of suspected marijuana, the office said.
Agents "observed a number of large bundled packages, referred to as 'super sacks,' in six cars on the train," the office said.
|Photo: Prime Juice Media|
|Chicago Mayor Richard Daley: "Every day there's pot coming to Chicago. America loves pot"|
The agents looked inside one of the sacks and saw "13 cubic bundles, which were encrusted in a thick layer of fine red masonry pigment dust." Tests showed all the packages contained marijuana, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.
Shipping documents said the sacks contained titanium ore sent by Comercializadora De Minerale, a company in Jalisco, Mexico, and were bound for Earth Minerals Corp. in Rockdale, just south of Joliet, Illinois.
The packages were then resealed and the railroad delivered them to a warehouse in Chicago Heights, according the the U.S. Attorney's Office.
One of the suspects, Carlos Osvaldo Quintero, spoke to a Union Pacific employee "several times" about the delivery, according to the office. From December 6 through December 10, the rail cars were unloaded by forklifts to a storage facility next to the warehouse, the office said.
Agents said they did not see any marijuana being removed from the storage facility before the arrests -- but if some of the pot made it onto the street, I don't imagine they'd rush to admit that.
Charged with conspiracy to possess and distribute marijuana were Quintero, also known as "Carlos Gomez" and "Miguel Dominguez," 31; his father, Martin Quintero, 63; Felipe de Jesus Magana-Campos, also known as "Padrino," 47; Eduardo Angel Zalayaran-Ruiz, also known as "Other Inge," 54; Javier Vera, also known as "Ducky," 24; Christian Gonzalez, 24; and Miguel Cordova, 20.
The charge carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison, and a maximum of life imprisonment and a $4 million fine.
Even large marijuana busts like this and the family bust in Tinley Park won't make a noticeable difference in Chicago's cannabis supply, admitted a surprisingly frank Mayor Richard Daly.
"Every day there's pot coming to Chicago," Daley said. "America loves pot, they love guns. Every day, you could write headlines every day. And every day Chicago police make an arrest, in a home, in a car."
Wow, that's pretty poetic, for a mayor. Hey Mayor Daley, did you ever consider a career as a slam poet?
"There's so much coming in," Daley said. "Both we have homegrown pot, and we have pot from foreign countries."