Man gets 19 years for Chicago area-NW Indiana heroin ring

A south suburban man was sentenced to more than 19 years in prison Thursday for his role in an operation that trafficked heroin between the Chicago area and northwest Indiana.

Antwon Willis, 46, of Richton Park, was the primary source of much of the heroin that was ultimately resold in northwest Indiana, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Northern District of Indiana.

On Thursday, Willis was sentenced to 235 months imprisonment and four years of supervised release for conspiracy to distribute heroin, prosecutors said. A five-day jury trail concluded with guilty verdicts on Feb. 5.

From 2009 to October 2014, Willis “combined, conspired, confederated and agreed with other persons to distribute over 100 grams of heroin” in a drug ring that spread to Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan and Minnesota, prosecutors said.

Willis mainly used intermediaries to make numerous trips and calls to buy heroin from him, then bring it back to LaPorte and Porter counties and eastern Illinois to use and sell to others, prosecutors said. He was also responsible for distributing at least 18 kilograms of heroin.

“Our federal, state and local partners work closely together with my office to locate the distributors of this highly addictive, dangerous drug and prosecute them,” U.S. Attorney David Capp said in the statement. “Even if someone lives in another community, or even another state, when heroin is sold in Indiana we will pursue the people who are responsible. We will continue to devote resources through prosecution and community training to curb this epidemic.”