Skokie man charged after cops find over $100,000 in drugs, cash at home

Officers searched 26-year-old Said Mahdi’s home Friday and uncovered $42,150 in cash, along with cocaine, cannabis, opioid painkillers and Xanax. Mahdi emigrated from Iraq during the U.S. occupation of the country.

SHARE Skokie man charged after cops find over $100,000 in drugs, cash at home
A 26-year-old man was hit with a list of felony drug charges after officers in Skokie found over $100,000 in drugs and cash at his home.

A 26-year-old man was hit with a list of felony drug charges after officers in Skokie found over $100,000 in drugs and cash at his home.

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A Skokie man who fled Iraq with his family was charged Sunday with a list of felonies after officers in the northern suburb searched his home and found more than $100,000 in drugs and cash.

Saif Mahdi, 26, was taken into custody Friday. At his initial court hearing on Sunday, prosecutors said officers saw Mahdi engage in a drug deal and then spotted a bag of marijuana when they subsequently stopped his car. The arrest came a day after police obtained warrants to search Mahdi, his vehicle and his home.

Prosecutors said officers searched the home Friday and uncovered $42,150 in cash, opioid painkillers worth more than $25,000, over 2,000 grams of cannabis valued at $18,000, Xanax pills valued at $11,300 and 52 grams of cocaine worth $5,000. Court records indicate the home is in the 10000 block of Lamon Avenue.

Michael Baker, Mahdi’s private attorney, told Judge Barbara Dawkins that Mahdi emigrated from Iraq with his mother and two younger siblings during the U.S. occupation of the country. Baker noted Mahdi and his family traveled through Syria as refugees and eventually became U.S. citizens.

Mahdi graduated from Mather High School and worked most recentl as a truck driver, Baker said. He noted that Mahdi’s mother recently died and his father remains in Iraq, leaving him to take care of his siblings and their home.

While Baker urged Dawkins to release Mahdi on his own recognizance, noting he has no prior criminal history, the judge rebuffed the request, pointing to the “extremely large sum of narcotics” officers seized. She set his bail at $30,000, meaning Mahdi must post $3,000 to be released.

“I don’t believe that is oppressive by any stretch in light of the high amount of cash that was seized from this residence,” she said.

Mahdi’s next court date was set for April 18.

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