News Release
April 21, 2008
Contact: Thomas E. Murphy
(314) 538-4660

Federal Grand Jury Indicts Illinois Resident

APR 21 -- Benton, IL - A. Courtney Cox, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, announced that on April 8, 2008, KEVIN M. COOPER, a/k/a “MD,” age 55, of Centralia, Illinois, was named in a single count Indictment returned by a Federal Grand Jury sitting in Benton, Illinois, charging him with conspiracy to distribute, and possess with intent to distribute, heroin, in violation of federal law. If convicted, COOPER faces a penalty of from 5-40 years’ imprisonment, a fine of up to $2,000,000, and a term of supervised release of at least 4 years. An indictment is a formal charge against a defendant. Under the law, a defendant is presumed to be innocent of a charge until proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt to the satisfaction of a jury.

The investigation was conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Clinton County Sheriff’s Department, the Illinois State Police, the Centralia Police Department, and the Marion County Sheriff’s Office pursuant to their participation in the Project Safe Neighborhoods Initiative. Project Safe Neighborhoods is a joint and cooperative effort of the United States Attorney’s Office, and federal, state and local law enforcement agencies directed at removing guns and drugs from our communities. The Marion County State’s Attorney’s Office also assisted during the investigation.

The case is assigned to Assistant United States Attorney George Norwood for prosecution.