Crime & Courts

Prosecutors: Bull Valley couple accused of drug trafficking tried to hide assets

WOODSTOCK – Prosecutors said a Bull Valley man accused of drug trafficking called his fiancée from jail and told her to start hiding money and assets only days after police found more than an estimated 350 pounds of marijuana in the couple’s mansion.

David A. Soskin, 43, appeared Wednesday with his attorney, Dan Hofmann, to ask Judge Sharon Prather to reduce his bond. Both Soskin and co-defendant Jamie M. Lee are being represented by the Donahue and Walsh law firm. The couple faces charges of marijuana trafficking, possession of marijuana with intent to deliver and possession of marijuana. Both face a minimum of
12 years in prison if convicted.

Soskin was arrested May 19 and Lee was taken into custody five days later after a months-long investigation that ramped up with the arrest of a Loves Park man May 18 and the discovery of piles of marijuana the next day in the Bull Valley home Soskin and Lee bought for $800,000 in December.

Hofmann argued that Soskin’s bond was excessive, pointing to the fact that Lee’s bond was significantly lower at $250,000 even though they face the same felony charges. He said Soskin’s bond was first set at $250,000, but it was increased to $1 million when he appeared in rights court.

Hofmann also said Soskin has generally led a law-abiding life, and he has four kids who live in the area.

“He has no ability to post $100,000,” Hofmann told the judge.

Assistant State’s Attorney Randi Freese objected to any bond reduction. She said that while in McHenry County Jail, Soskin made phone calls to Lee telling her to get rid of any assets she could to minimize what they had done.

The prosecutor also said Soskin has a past criminal history involving firearms, and that concerned her given the “dangerous weapons” found in the Bull Valley mansion.

Police found a .50-caliber machine gun, a Cobray M11 machine pistol with a suppressor, a shotgun and several boxes of ammunition at the mansion, records show. Weapons charges have not yet been filed because the weapons are being examined by state and federal officials, authorities have said.

Soskin was sentenced in 1998 to
20 months in federal prison for illegally possessing and selling stolen firearms. He pleaded guilty to stealing about
150 firearms from a Bensenville gun store owned by his father. One of the guns recovered by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was tied to a death in Chicago, and several others were connected to robberies.

“He has every reason to flee the state,” Freese told the judge.

Prather denied the bond reduction motion, meaning Soskin would have to post $100,000, or 10 percent of his $1 million bond, to be released from jail before trial.

Sheriff’s deputies searched the couple’s Bull Valley home May 19 and found about 350 pounds of marijuana in a locked closet in the master bedroom, according to court documents. The street value of the marijuana was estimated at about $3.2 million.

Soskin next will appear in court June 19. If he is able to come up with the money to post bond, he would have to prove the funds came from a legitimate source, according to a court order. Funds tied to drug trafficking or other criminal or illegal sources cannot be used to post bond.

Prosecutors also have moved to seize the $800,000 mansion, cash, 18 TVs and a number of vehicles, including a firetruck. McHenry County Judge Michael Feetterer previously found there was probable cause to move forward with seizing the property.

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