Two Evanston residents have been sentenced to six years in prison after pleading guility Wednesday to laundering money from illegal drug sales.

Juan C. Fernandez, 40, and Reyna Garcia-Manzanares, 42, both of the 400 block of Howard Street in Evanston were arrested on April 1, 2014 after Department of Homeland Security agents saw them meet someone in the parking lot of a business in the 900 block of Grove Street in Aurora. When police later stopped their car in Chicago, police say they found more than $190,000 in cash inside.
The Kane County State’s Attorney’s office says that when questioned by police, Garcia-Manzanares said she assisted in laundering the money in smaller amounts into multiple bank accounts to avoid detection by law enforcement, and that she received $10 to $15 for each bank transaction.

Fernandez, prosecutors say, said he knew the money he was picking up was the proceeds of illegal narcotics activity.

The two have been held in the Kane County jail since their arrest.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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