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Elgin man gets 23 years in Naperville heroin bust

An Elgin man who was found with 900 grams of heroin in May was sentenced to 23 years in prison Friday.

Eduardo Lara-Cardenas, 29, was sentenced to 23 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections after pleading guilty for possession and attempted delivery of heroin, which is a class X felony, according to a statement from the DuPage County state’s attorney’s office.

Lara-Cardenas, formerly of the 300 block of McClure Road in Elgin, was acting suspicious when he boarded an Amtrak train bound for Naperville from Sacramento, California, on May 16, prosecutors said. Amtrak employees alerted authorities and the next day Drug Enforcement Administration agents and Naperville police officers saw Lara-Cardenas get off the train with two duffel bags and get into a vehicle.

When police pulled the vehicle over for a traffic violation, Lara-Cardenas agreed to a search of the duffel bags, prosecutors said. Investigators found 900 grams of heroin with a street value of about $160,000.

“Thanks to the cooperative efforts of Amtrak authorities, the DEA and the Naperville Police Department, we were able to not only put this defendant behind bars where he belongs, but we were also able to take an extremely large amount of heroin off the streets,” DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin said in the statement.

“In addition to the potential lives saved thanks to the interception of this shipment of heroin, today’s sentencing sends the message that if you attempt to bring killer drugs to DuPage County you will be caught, prosecuted and sentenced to a significant amount of time behind bars,” he said.

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