Accused drug dealer at heart of courthouse scandal won't go to rehab

News-DemocratJune 24, 2013 

Sean D. McGilvery, an accused heroin dealer and key figure in a drug scandal that has rocked the St. Clair County court.


A federal magistrate has ruled an accused drug dealer at the heart of the St. Clair County courthouse drug scandal will not be released into an inpatient drug rehabilitation facility.

Sean D. McGilvery, 34, had sought treatment for heroin addiction at a residential drug treatment center. After completing the program, McGilvery wanted to be released under house arrest to live with his aunt in St. Louis.

U.S. Magistrate Donald Wilkerson denied his request on Monday, according to court records.

Wilkerson objected to releasing McGilvery because he doubted the treatment program could be successful in light of previous treatments undergone by McGilvery.

"(McGilvery) successfully completed the requirements of the St. Clair County, Illinois drug court, a component of which is drug treatment," Wilkerson writes in the order. "However, at the time of his arrest, (McGilvery) was on a methadone maintenance program but was nonetheless allegedly actively distributing and using heroin. Clearly, (McGilvery's) most recent participation in drug treatment was unsuccessful."

McGilvery faces charges of conspiracy to distribute and possession of more than two pounds of heroin. Previous felony charges against McGilvery had been dismissed by former St. Clair County Circuit Judge Mike Cook after McGilvery completed a treatment program.

Cook, 43, faces federal drug charges and has resigned his judgeship. Cook was arrested May 22 at McGilvery's house in Belleville.

Federal prosecutors cited a host of concerns with releasing McGilvery, including the risk that McGilvery would flee from drug charges that carry substantial jail sentences.

McGilvery's lawyer had argued McGilvery needed treatment to battle a "ferocious drug addiction" to heroin and methadone.

Contact reporter Daniel Kelley at or 618-239-2501. Reporter Beth Hundsdorfer contributed to this article.

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