SANFORD J. SCHMIDT The Telegraph
January 1, 2014
EDWARDSVILLE — Authorities have taken a first step toward seizing a house worth upward of $500,000 in an upscale Edwardsville subdivision after police found an alleged methamphetamine distribution operation in the house.
The Madison County State’s Attorney’s Office filed a court document in an effort to seize a home in the 3300 block of Karros Court in the Ebbets Field Subdivision.
Police searched the place Dec. 5 and found a total of 17 grams of crystal meth in the house, along with drug paraphernalia.
Four people were arrested and charged with unlawful distribution of methamphetamine.
A sworn statement filed in connection with the case said state police obtained a search warrant and found the methamphetamine in a bedroom in which one of the suspects and her boyfriend were staying. About 8 grams of the drug were found in a bedroom/bathroom area where two others were staying.
The officers took a digital scale and plastic bags as evidence. One of the suspects, Steven W. Sweningsen, 42, admitted that he had made trips to south St. Louis to trade meth for heroin, according to the statement. All of the home’s occupants admitted to using crystal meth on a regular basis, the document stated.
In addition to Sweningsen, Kaenin Thomas, 34; Kelly A. Thomas, 30; and Gerald E. Provencher, 28; were charged with unlawful possession with intent to deliver methamphetamine.
Bail on Provencher was set at $100,000. Bail on the other three suspects was set at $75,000.
Ebbets Field is a subdivision featuring large homes worth between $400,000 and $1 million. It was developed by prominent businessman Robert Plummer, of Edwardsville, a Dodgers fan. Streets are named after famous Dodgers, such as Duke Snider and Sandy Koufax.
Prosecutors claim the property is subject to forfeiture under the state controlled substances act and the methamphetamine control and community protection act.
Names in the state’s request are Jon S. Thomas and Joanne M. Thomas, as trustees, and Kaenin Thomas and Kelly Thomas as beneficiaries.
The property is held in a land trust with Jon S. Thomas and Joanne M. Thomas as trustees and Kaenin and Kelly Thomas as the sole beneficiaries.
The law enforcement sworn statement alleges Joanne M. Thomas told authorities she was aware of Kaenin and Kelly Thomas’ alleged drug use and past history with criminal drug charges in California.
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