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Illinois quick hits: Two charged over dark web marketplace; autopsy inconclusive on girl’s airplane death

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DARK WEB CHARGES

Prosecutors charged two men in federal court in Chicago with operating “Empire Market,” a dark web marketplace that enabled users to anonymously buy and sell more than $430 million in illegal goods and services around the world. Prosecutors say Thomas Pavey of Ormond Beach, Florida, and Raheim Hamilton of Suffolk, Virginia, owned and operated Empire Market from 2018 to 2020. Pavey and Hamilton are in U.S. law enforcement custody.

EMERGENCY LANDING DEATH

Preliminary autopsy results were inconclusive regarding an 8-year-old Missouri girl who died after her flight made an emergency landing in Peoria. The Peoria County coroner said there was no evidence of foul play and no signs of abuse or neglect on the body of Sydney Weston. She died Thursday morning after her flight, which started in Joplin, Mo., made an emergency landing at the Greater Peoria International Airport just after 7 a.m. Weston’s family was on their way from Missouri to Chicago for a vacation when she suddenly became ill and then unresponsive during the flight.

CLOTHING THEFT

A Naperville woman is facing charges after allegedly using her two young daughters to help steal over 200 clothing items from a JC Penney in Lombard. Following an investigation, police believe 36-year-old Ritka Jain used her 9 and 5-year-old daughters to conceal $4,600 worth of items. Jain allegedly used a stolen piece of luggage and a baby stroller to hide items. She was charged with two counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor, burglary and retail theft.

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