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Feds charge 8 more NW Indiana gang members

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Federal prosecutors on Friday charged eight alleged Imperial Gangsters street gang members in a 41-count indictment that expands on previous homicide and drug trafficking charges.

The indictment Friday and those prior allege 12 murders and eight attempted murders dating to 2002, according to David Capp, U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Indiana, who announced the charges at a news conference in Hammond.  

“With this indictment we have now charged 23 members of the Imperial Gangsters,” Capp said. “The Imperial Gangsters is an ongoing criminal enterprise and we will continue our efforts until all members are off the streets.”

Friday’s indictment included charges against new defendants for conspiracy to participate in racketeering activity and conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine and 100 kilograms or more of marijuana. Those charged were: Salvador Chavez, 33, Chicago; Raymond Campos, 28, Ace Cortez, 33, Julius Solis, 23, Darmaile Cortez Sutton, 29, Eddie Torres, 42, and Richard Reyes, 40, all of East Chicago; and Julian Guillermo Serna, 23, of Munster.

The indictment also alleges five additional homicides that were not alleged in previous indictments:
•    The 2004 homicide of Anuar David Paez in East Chicago allegedly by Cortez;
•    The 2005 homicide of Guadalupe Trevino in Gary, allegedly by Jason Medina, who was previously indicted;
•    The 2007 homicide of Rene Alonzo in East Chicago, allegedly by Reyes;
•    The 2007 homicide of Luis Ortiz in Hammond, allegedly Juan Briseno, who was previously indicted;
•    The 2008 homicide of Mario Soriano in Hammond, allegedly by Serna.

The indictment also charges Briseno with three attempted homicides that were not previously charged in 2008 and 2009. Solis is also accused in a new attempted murder charge dating to 2009.

In addition to Briseno, seven people remain charged in prior indictments: Justin Weaver, Michael Anthony Castillo, Jason Medina, Edward Raye Serna, Robert Lockhart, Armando Jose Velasquez and Anthony Baldazo.

Seven people have pleaded guilty: Galo Benjamin Feliciano, Guillermo Briseno, Alejandro Balboa Lara, Kevin Beltran, David Almaraz, Joseph Rene Torres and Alejandro Briseno.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; the East Chicago Police Department; the Federal Bureau of Investigation and law enforcement offices in Gary, Hammond and Lake County are investigating. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David J. Nozick.

 

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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