Thomas Franzen

ST. CHARLES – A Montgomery cancer patient was taken into custody June 14 to begin serving his four-year sentence after pleading guilty to a reduced charged of possession of more than 5,000 grams of cannabis.

Thomas J. Franzen, 37, of the 900 block of Harmony Drive in Montgomery, received a package containing more than 40 pounds of marijuana-infused chocolates through the U.S. Postal Service in February of 2014. Kane County prosecutors alleged that he was trying to sell the candy, but Franzen’s attorney, David Camic, said his client was using the edibles to ease the pain associated with cancer treatment.

Camic said that Franzen thanked Kane County Circuit Court Judge Clint Hull for his understanding and compassion in court. Franzen was sentenced on May 30, but Hull gave him two weeks to get additional medical care before being taken into custody.

“Franzen scheduled doctor’s appointments and put his affairs in order before beginning his sentence,” Camic said. “He and his family are guardedly optimistic that he will be able to serve his sentence without any serious adverse consequences to his health. The (Illinois) Department of Corrections has an obligation to take care of him, and they will decide the care he gets while in prison.”

Franzen had also been charged with unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of a substance containing cocaine and the most serious charge, trafficking more than 5,000 grams of cannabis, which carries a minimum 12-year prison sentence. Those charges were subsequently dropped in the plea agreement.

According to a press release from the Kane County State’s Attorney’s Office, prosecutors stated in court that postal workers, having noticed a pattern of suspicious parcels being delivered to Franzen, obtained a search warrant and opened a package sent from a California address that was addressed to Franzen.

According to the release, police found more than 19,000 grams of chocolate infused with THC.