Criminal Justice

Serious Crimes, Serious Times for Gang Defendants

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August 9, 2013 — U.S. Attorney David Capp says two more defendants in U.S. v. Vargas et al. have federal prison sentences to serve.

Capp’s office says 47-year-old Sisto Bernal of Chicago, Illinois and 29-year-old Santiago Gudino of Hammond, Indiana received their sentences yesterday from Senior District Judge Rudy Lozano.

Court records show both men pleaded “‘guilty’ to conspiracy to participate in racketeering activity and conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and distribute 5 kilograms or more of cocaine and 1000 kilograms or more of marijuana.”

Capp says Bernal has a 24-year prison sentence and five years of supervised release, while Gudino’s term is 262 months (21 years, 10 months) imprisonment and five years of supervised release.

According to the indictment Bernal and Gudino are members of the Latin Kings, a nationwide gang that originated in Chicago and spread throughout the United States.

The indictments also claim the Latin Kings gang was responsible for at least 20 murders in the Chicago/Northwest Indiana area and Big Spring, Texas, causing an investigation and charges in the US v. Vargas et al. case that involve several law enforcement agencies, including the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; the Drug Enforcement Administration; Federal Bureau of Investigation; the U.S. Immigration and Custom Office of Homeland Security Investigations; the National Gang Targeting, Enforcement & Coordination Center; the National Gang Intelligence Center; the Chicago Police Department; the East Chicago Police Department; the Griffith Police Department; the Hammond Police Department; the Highland Police Department; and the Houston Police Department. The investigation of the Chicago Police Department officers was conducted by Chicago City Public Corruption Task Force, a Chicago Police Department- Internal Affairs and FBI – Chicago law enforcement initiative. This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David J. Nozick, and Joseph A. Cooley, Trial Attorney, United States Department of Justice – Organized Crime and Gang Section.


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