My client had flown his aircraft into the Litchfield Airport in Montgomery County. He was detained by Customs and Border Patrol / ICE agents shortly after he left the airport. He was taken into custody and searched. Nothing was found on my client. He was handcuffed and all his belongings taken from him. The CBP agents took him back to the airport where he refused their requests to search his airplane. A K9 was summoned from Litchfield Police Department. The K9 was uncertified on the date of the sniff search. Cannabis was discovered in the aircraft. He was taken to jail, charged, and had to post $30,000 to be released on bond. His aircraft was seized subject to civil forfeiture proceedings.
He hired us to represent him after speaking with Chicago area firms and two firms in nearby Springfield. We straightforwardly advised him of the important search and seizure issues he needed to pursue in the form of a Motion to Suppress. We had to seek sanctions against the State's Attorney as they would not voluntarily comply with our discovery requests. Finally, we received full discovery from the State. We prepared and argued the motion to suppress. The Court agreed with our assessment and entered an Order barring introduction of any Cannabis at the trial. This meant the State lost its case.
We also were able to persuade the State to release the aircraft. However, Customs and Border Patrol has picked up the seizure. We are currently contesting that on behalf of my client.
This is a great example of how important it is to force the State to give you all the discovery you are entitled to. By failing to do so you are potentially losing your ability to win a motion that could dispose of your case. Only experienced and competent attorneys with many years of experience can achieve this goal. Choose your attorney carefully.