Plane loaded with 70 lbs of pot seized in Peoria

Dec 11, 2013

A picture of the plane carrying large amounts of cannabis stopped at the Peoria International Airport on its way to the East Coast.

Area law enforcement arrested two Florida residents after finding more than 50 pounds of marijuana on their plane.

The Peoria Multi-County Enforcement Group, Illinois State Police Air Operations and the Peoria County Sheriff’s Office intercepted the suspicious plane Tuesday night at the Peoria International Airport. They found about 70 vacuum-sealed packages of cannabis valued at about 175-thousand dollars.

69-year old James Epperson, who was flying the plane, and his passenger, 57 year old Georgette Heard were taken into custody. Multi-County Enforcement Group Director Dave Briggs says officials gathered information on the plane from multiple agencies:

 “We had a good plan of attack for this certainly makes you aware of the kind of drugs that possibly go through the area from time to time,” Briggs.  

 Both suspects are being charged with cannabis trafficking and possession with intent to deliver more than five-thousand grams of cannabis.  Epperson also had two outstanding warrants from Cook County for unlawful delivery of cocaine. The airplane has also been seized.