A man who is widely considered as a leading cocaine dealer for a majority of Chicago’s western suburbs was arrested near the 2900 block of Ridgeland Avenue in Berwyn on Thursday, May 5, according to media reports.
Jose U. Lechuga, a 40-year-old Chicago resident, was taken into custody at 7:17 p.m. on May 5 by members of the Riverside police and the West Suburban Enhanced Drug/Gang Enforcement (WEDGE) task force. Officers followed a tip that led to a drug transaction which took place within 1,000 feet of Freedom Middle School. According to Riverside Police Chief and WEDGE chairperson Thomas Weitzel, Lechuga has close ties to the Mexican cartel and has utilized this location for several narcotics transactions.
“The arrest of Mr. Lechuga, who was making daily sales within 1,000 feet of a grade school, is exactly the reason that the WEDGE task force was formed,” Weitzel said in a statement. “This unit, made up of 10 west suburban communities, handles gang and drug cases which impact the communities we serve. This arrest will immediately improve the quality of life for residents in the area of the 2900 block of south Ridgeland in Berwyn.”
Police found 157 grams of cocaine, cutting and packaging materials, scales, and $1,000 in cash at the time of arrest, according to the Pach.
Lechuga has been charged with three felonies: unlawful possession of a controlled substance, unlawful delivery of a controlled substance while within 1,000 feet of a school and unlawful delivery of a controlled substance, according to police.