A joint federal and state investigation has led to the arrest of almost 50 members of a street gang in Illinois. They are alleged to have been involved in an extended criminal enterprise involving drugs and weapons.
Those who were arrested have been accused of multiple drug and weapons violations. The investigation took more than two years. It is alleged that the gang has been operating in Chicago for decades distributing drugs and guns. The drugs involved included methamphetamine, crack and cocaine. The charges are on a federal and state level.
Twenty-one of the arrested individuals are facing federal charges for possessing firearms as felons. In total, 118 guns were confiscated in the case, including 15 assault rifles. A conviction for federal weapons possession charges can result in a prison sentence of up to 10 years. The other accused members have been charged with drug and weapons trafficking. It was not disclosed whether those arrested are high-ranking gang members or lower in the hierarchy.
Drug offenses are treated very seriously. This is true whether the allegations are for drug possession or manufacturing and distribution. Charges that extend to include weapons possession can make matters worse for the defendant. With an investigation of this magnitude, law enforcement and prosecutors will likely do everything they can to secure convictions. Those who have been arrested could face serious consequences and extended jail sentences. Regardless of the accusations, it is important for a defendant to be protected by a legal professional who is experienced with providing defenses for federal and state drug charges.