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Harvard man charged with possessing 44 pounds of cocaine

Justin J. Pena, 36, of Harvard.

A Harvard man was charged after police found him in possession of 44 pounds of cocaine, which has a street value of over $600,000, officials said.

Justin J. Pena, 36, of the 800 block of West Metzen Street in Harvard, was charged with unlawful possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver and unlawful possession of a controlled substance.

Prosecutors said that officers recovered approximately 20 kilograms of cocaine, which is 44 pounds, during an investigation in February.

The approximate value of the cocaine is $32,000 per kilogram, adding up to $640,000, prosecutors said in a motion.

Officers also recovered $250,000 in cash in Pena’s possession.

An arrest warrant was issued for Pena in February. He was taken into custody on Tuesday by the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office.

Pena faces 15-60 years in prison on the charge of unlawful possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver, which is an enhanced Super X felony due to the amount recovered.

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He also faces 10-50 years in prison on the charge of unlawful possession of a controlled substance, which is a super Class 1 felony due to the amount recovered.

Pena, who said in court documents that he has been unemployed for a year, was appointed a public defender. He is scheduled to appear in court on Friday.

Pena remains held in the McHenry County jail on a $500,000 bond.


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