Superseding Indictment Returned Charging Members of the Krazy Locos Criminal Street Gang with Two Homicides, Robbery, Firearms, and Narcotics Charges
|U.S. Attorney’s Office October 30, 2009|
Jeffrey H. Sloman, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Michael F. McAuliffe, Palm Beach County State Attorney, John V. Gillies, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Miami Field Office, Hugo Barrera, Special Agent in Charge, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Anthony V. Mangione, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Office of Investigations, and Ric L. Bradshaw, Sheriff, Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, announced yesterday the return of a forty-six (46) count federal Superseding Indictment charging five members of the “Krazy Locos” gang with two homicides, attempted Hobbs Act robbery, conspiracy to distribute controlled substances and firearms, and numerous sales of firearms, narcotics, a grenade, and a bulletproof vest. The Superseding Indictment arose from a joint federal-state investigation into the Krazy Locos gang, which was operating throughout Palm Beach County.
As set forth in the Superseding Indictment, the Krazy Locos, also known as the "KL" gang, operates primarily in Palm Beach County, Florida. The Krazy Locos has been affiliated at times with another gang, the "Making Life Krazy" or "MLK" gang, which also operates in Palm Beach County. From 2007 through 2009, there were approximately forty Krazy Locos gang members and associates.
Beginning in approximately late 2007, the Krazy Locos began an alliance with a larger gang named Sur-13, or the "Sureños." Sur-13 first became prominent in California but has spread to cities throughout the United States. The alliance between the two was formed when certain high-ranking Krazy Locos members learned that they would be imprisoned and sought to affiliate themselves with Sur-13 to procure protection while incarcerated, since Sur-13 has a large presence in the jails. Thus, beginning in approximately mid-2008, some Krazy Locos members began referring to the gang as "KL-13."
According to the allegations, the Krazy Locos organization made money through the sale of controlled substances, primarily oxycodone, Xanax, methadone, cocaine, crack, and marijuana. With respect to the prescription medications (oxycodone, Xanax, and methadone), a Krazy Locos member would “sponsor” a patient, that is, pay for the patient’s medical visit and prescription, in exchange for a portion of the prescription medication. The gang would then re-sell the prescription medication. Members of the gang also were required to pay “taxes” to the gang on a weekly basis and often resorted to criminal activity to secure the money to pay their “taxes.”
Charged in the Superseding Indictment are defendants Jonathan Gonzalez, Silverio Macedonio-Gregorio, Yolibeth Najera, Ivan Isidro Santiago, and Christopher Gonzalez-Chamberlain. All defendants are charged with conspiring to distribute cocaine, crack cocaine, and oxycodone from January through August 2009, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 846. In addition, defendants are separately charged in individual counts with maintaining a place for the purpose of distributing controlled substances; two homicides; acts of racketeering that included conspiracy to commit murder, robbery, drugs, and obstruction of justice. Some defendants also face weapons charges, including assault with a dangerous weapon; using, carrying, brandishing, and possessing a firearm in connection with these crimes of violence and using a firearm in the commission of murder. More details are in Counts 1 - 15 of the attached Superseding Indictment.
Counts 16 through 45 of the Superseding Indictment appeared in the original Indictment and relate to a series of purchases of firearms, ammunition, narcotics, a grenade, and a bulletproof vest from the members of the Krazy Locos gang. As alleged in the Superseding Indictment, all five defendants conspired to transfer a firearm, knowing that such firearm would be used to commit a crime of violence or a drug trafficking crime, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 924(h). The defendants committed acts in furtherance of the conspiracy by obtaining firearms from persons not licensed to sell firearms and selling those firearms to another, who the defendants believed intended to transport the firearms to Mexico for use in armed conflict between narcotics traffickers and the police and military forces of the Mexican government. These charges are listed in Counts 2 - 45 of the Superseding Indictment. Lastly, Count 46 charges that defendant Ivan Isidro Santiago possessed a handgun after having previously been convicted of a felony.
Based upon the allegations contained in the Superseding Indictment, Jonathan Gonzalez faces a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 25 years and a possible maximum of multiple life sentences or death. Silverio Macedonio-Gregorio faces a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of five years up to a maximum of life imprisonment. Yolibeth Najera faces a maximum of 163 years’ imprisonment. Ivan Isidro Santiago faces a maximum of 70 years’ imprisonment. Christopher Gonzalez faces a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of ten years up and a possible maximum of multiple life sentences or death. The U.S. Department of Justice has not yet reached a determination regarding whether it will seek the death penalty.
Acting U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Sloman stated, “Gang violence is a scourge to our communities. Gangs and gun violence cause not only the death of gang members and their targets, but also the death of innocent bystanders caught in the cross-fire. This case is the result of extraordinary teamwork by federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, all standing united in our efforts to stem the tide of violence that plagues our city streets.”
Michael F. McAuliffe, State Attorney for Palm Beach County stated, “This case involves allegations of deadly violence that threatens our sense of safety and the health of the community. The multi-agency effort in this matter sets the standard for pushing back.”
John V. Gillies, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Miami Office stated, “Gang violence is a real concern to the FBI and our law enforcement partners. In this case, weapons and drugs led to the murder of two individuals. This Superseding Indictment, resulting in additional charges, along with our continued efforts to dismantle local gangs, will help make our streets safer and communities can begin to live without fear. The FBI, Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, ATF, and ICE have formed a unique partnership to combat gang activity in Palm Beach County.”
“ATF, along with our law enforcement partners, are committed to reducing gun violence in our communities. As long as gangs use firearms to protect and enforce their trade, ATF will be there to enforce federal firearm laws,” said Hugo Barrera, Special Agent in Charge of ATF’s Miami Field Division. “This Indictment reinforces our commitment to keeping our communities safe."
"This enforcement action was part of ICE's national initiative to partner with federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies to target the significant public safety threat posed by transnational street gangs," said Anthony Mangione, Special Agent in Charge of the ICE Office of Investigations in Miami. "We are using all of our authority and expertise to tackle the gang problem in South Florida, and hope that the community will feel safer knowing that we have arrested violent street gang members that were terrorizing our neighborhoods."
A status conference is scheduled before U.S. District Judge Kenneth A. Marra in West Palm Beach, Florida at 10:30 a.m., Friday, October 30, 2009.
Charges in an indictment are merely accusations and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
This case was brought by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida as part of the Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) program of the Department of Justice. Mr. Sloman commended the investigative efforts of the Palm Beach County State Attorney’s office, the FBI, ATF, ICE’s Office of Investigations, and the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office. Mr. Sloman also commended the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, West Palm Beach Police Department, and Delray Beach Police Department for their assistant and cooperation in this investigation.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.