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Slain man was federal defendant in drug conspiracy case

By Jeremy Gorner, Annie Sweeney and Christy Gutowski, Chicago Tribune

CHICAGO — A man found shot and killed last week in Woodridge, Ill., was a federal defendant in a drug conspiracy ring in which he and six others were accused of peddling heroin on Chicago’s West Side, authorities said Monday.

Gregory Holden, 32, was indicted last Tuesday, just two days before he was found shot multiple times inside his fiancee’s apartment. Two young daughters of his were present but unharmed, according to his family.

No arrests have been made in the slaying of Holden, who according to authorities was also known as “Lil’ Greg” and “Lil’ G.”
Officials with the U.S. attorney’s office in Chicago confirmed that Holden was a defendant in the case.

David Glockner, chief of the office’s criminal division, also said that federal authorities were taking part in the investigation into Holden’s murder. No further information was available from the government.

Police in Woodridge and DuPage County prosecutors declined to comment about whether his death was linked to the drug case. But a spokeswoman for the police department has described the slaying as an isolated incident and said police don’t believe the public is in danger.

Holden was first arrested by special agents with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration in October on federal drug charges. The charges stemmed from heroin transactions he made on the West Side with a confidential informant cooperating with the DEA, court records show.

According to the charges, the informant wore hidden recorders as he paid Holden $2,500 in cash supplied by the DEA for a little under an ounce of heroin during a meeting in the parking lot of Murray’s Discount Store, the charges alleged.

Then in March 2007, the two met again by a bus turnaround. As federal agents looked on, the wired informant handed over another $2,500 in cash for almost an ounce of heroin.

In a separate criminal complaint filed in October, Holden’s co-defendants were accused of using stash houses on the West Side, taking steps to avoid police detection by using counter-surveillance techniques such as driving erratically to determine whether they were being followed by authorities.

Holden had been free on bond since shortly after his October arrest, according to court records.

Family members described Holden as a good father who raised three daughters — ages 12, 8 and 3 — with his fiancee. The couple had been dating since elementary school, they said.

(Tribune reporter Katherine Skiba contributed.)
©2011 the Chicago Tribune

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