Champaign man gets 20 years for latest drug convictions

Champaign man gets 20 years for latest drug convictions

URBANA — A Champaign man with a history of drug convictions was sentenced to 20 years in prison earlier this week for his latest drug-related convictions.

Assistant State's Attorney Joel Fletcher sought a sentence in excess of 20 years for Lateef Thomas, 40, while his attorney, Jim Dedman of Savoy, asked for closer to the minimum of six years.

Thomas, who listed an address in the 1100 block of North McKinley Avenue, was convicted by a jury Nov. 30 of possession with intent to deliver cocaine and two counts of delivery of a controlled substance.

The delivery convictions stemmed from cocaine sales he made from his home on Sept. 7 and 23, 2016, to an informant working with the Champaign County Street Crimes Task Force.

Champaign County Judge Roger Webber sentenced Thomas to 20 years on the most-serious conviction and 10 years for each of the other two, all to be served at the same time.

Fletcher said Thomas had two prior convictions for delivery of a controlled substance and one for possession of a controlled substance. He also had two prior convictions for driving under the influence and several other traffic offenses.

Webber said Thomas had made a career out of selling drugs and had expressed little remorse for that.

Thomas is eligible for day-for-day good time on his sentence. He was given credit for 42 days already served and was ordered to pay fines and costs in excess of $4,700.

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