Des Plaines Man Imprisoned In Morocco Granted Pardon

Crime, Law and JusticeMoroccoCrimeJails and PrisonsWGNJames DouglasDrug Trafficking

(WGN-AM)- After 13 months in a Moroccan prison, a Des Plaines man is back home, thanks to a pardon granted last week by the nation's king.

James Douglas Willson was jailed in May 2007 after a mechanical problem forced him to land a twin-engine Cessna 337 in an area of Morocco frequented by smugglers.

According to his daughter, Marilyn Brief, Willson is resting at his home. The 67-year-old former commercial airline pilot has serious health issues as a result of his prison stay.

Willson, who was without his passport, was convicted of illegally entering the country and drug trafficking. Brief said her father weighed 158 pounds at the start of his prison stint and was more than 50 pounds lighter when he arrived home Friday.

(The Associated Press contributed to this story)

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