Federal authorities filed a complaint Wednesday in an effort to legally seize more than $1.3 million worth of silver bars and gold and silver coins as well as more than $100,000 in cash recovered from a DuPage County-based drug operation, authorities said.
After investigating the operation, which police say moved massive amounts of marijuana from California to the Chicago area for more than a year, authorities arrested William E. Brock outside a warehouse facility near McClellan Air Force Base in North Highlands, Calif.
While executing a search warrant on the minivan the 36-year-old Glen Ellyn man was driving on April 25, FBI agents discovered 44 sealed cardboard boxes containing approximately 294 pounds of marijuana in vacuum sealed bags, according to the complaint filed Wednesday.
Later that night, agents discovered 34 more boxes containing 412 pounds of marijuana inside a storage unit that Brock had leased in October 2010, according to court documents.
While under arrest in California, Brock consented to a search of his Glen Ellyn residence on Kings Court and a search of the residence on April 25 uncovered about 2 pounds of marijuana, just under $65,000 in cash, heat seal bags, a money counting machine and a vacuum sealer, as well as a lease agreement for a storage unit about 3 miles away in Lisle.
When agents told Brock they would be searching the unit, he stated, "that's gonna hurt," according to the federal complaint.
A search of the unit at Lock Up Self Storage, 435 Ogden Avenue, revealed 133 one-hundred troy ounce silver bars, 547 ten troy ounce silver bars, 859 five troy ounce silver bars, 10,001 one troy ounce silver rounds and five 5-gallon buckets filled with gold and silver coins, according to court documents. The total value of the silver and gold is estimated at $1,305,105. Agents also recovered $75,000 in bundled cash, according to the complaint.
The total weight of the seized silver is estimated at 2,090 pounds.
While under arrests Brock told a group of Will County Sheriff's deputies that "the South Side of Chicago will be hurting for weed for awhile," and that he fronted about $1 million in marijuana to customers and was owed $270,000 from one individual, according to the complaint.
He also admitted to dealing marijuana out of his Glen Ellyn residence and said he used a Ford F-250, which was also seized, to deal and collect profits.
Authorities were tipped to Brock in February 2011 and began conducting surveillance on his residence in March and April 2012, according to the complaint.
During the investigation, they observed him drive from his Glen Ellyn home to Sacramento and back in the Ford F-250, and when agents told Brock it was being seized, he said "not my truck, I love that truck," according to the complaint.
Brock was indicted in an eastern California district court for conspiring to distribute more than 100 kilograms of marijuana and possession with the intent to deliver more than 100 kilograms of marijuana.