Now the federal government is using a law aimed first at the Mafiosi to prosecute the five.
On August 4, 2020, it looked like an old-fashioned attack on Oak Street in Chicago: two attack cars, four shooters and a hail of bullets. But the target wasn’t a 1930s gangster. He was a rapper from the new millennium: FBG Duck. Investigators and city officials say he was a gang member whose videos angered members of a rival gang. Five of the suspected members of rival gangs are charged with his murder under the RICO Act: The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupted Organizations Act. In 1970, this law was created to help dismantle traditional organized crime.
The U.S. District Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois said the five suspects were members of the O-Block street gang.
“The reason this is being charged federally is because we were able to establish evidence that there was a racketeering business here that was involved and that this murder was committed as part of that,” the prosecutor said. American from the Northern District of Illinois, John Lausch.
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The suspects who have been charged with racketeering murder are:
– Marcus Smart, 22
-Charles Liggines, 30 years old
-Kenneth Robertson, 28
-Tacarlos Free, 30
-Christophe Thomas, 22 years old
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The indictment also includes charges of firearms violations and assaults using racketeering.
Liggins, Offerd, Thomas and Smart were each arrested on Wednesday morning and appeared in court on Wednesday afternoon. Authorities said three of the suspects were arrested near 63rd Street and King Drive. A fourth suspect has been located elsewhere while a fifth person has been arrested by state authorities. The operation is the result of collaboration between federal, state, departmental and local law enforcement agencies. If found guilty, suspects could face a minimum sentence of life in federal prison.
Carlton Weekly’s mother reacted emotionally to the arrests, saying justice has been served.
“When you just trust God and are patient, it all falls into place,” the mother said.
Authorities say the group committed the murder to increase the position of the O-Block street gang. Chicago Police Superintendent. David Brown said he really wanted to go after gangs.
“We are working hand in hand to stop the flow of drugs and weapons,” Brown said. “We are prosecuting gangs in this city. This includes gang investigations, narcotics investigations and gun investigations. We are working together to hold gang members accountable for the violence.”
Emmerson Buie, FBI special agent in charge of the Chicago field office, added: “We stand up for those who can’t stand up for themselves and that should send a strong message.”
Chicago criminal defense attorney Tony Thedford spoke on social media, calling it “very powerful tools” which “are now being used by law enforcement and government to prosecute crimes.” Sometimes the evidence is gathered directly from social media, Thedford said.
“You have a street gang, an alleged street gang that kills another gang member in a high profile case in downtown Chicago. So my belief is that the answer is the harshest answer possible once you get there. ‘they found suspects and charged them, “Thedford said. “There are a lot of allegations of back-and-forth online or online threats … posted back and forth which then led to retaliation, which would have led to the death of this young man,” Thedford said .
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