CHICAGO, Oct. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Three Chicago gang members were to
appear before U.S. District Court Magistrate Nan R. Nolan today after being
arrested on federal firearms and narcotics violations by special agents of
the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
Cynthia Ford, Danny L. Mitchell and Albert W. Jones were arrested
yesterday after they allegedly traded four and one-half ounces of crack
cocaine for eight semi-automatic handguns during an undercover sting. A
fourth coconspirator named in the criminal complaint, Terryon Cates,
remains at large. As previously convicted felons, all the defendants are
prohibited under federal law from possessing firearms.
The arrests culminated a three-month series of undercover crack cocaine
and heroin buys and recorded conversations about buying guns. Ford,
Mitchell and Jones attempted to flee the scene at the conclusion of the
undercover arrest operation yesterday, but were immediately apprehended.
All four suspects are members of the Gangster Disciples Street Gang
operating in the Englewood neighborhood in Chicago.
Ford, 24, of 1006 E. 80th St., is a ranking member of the Gangster
Disciples. Mitchell, 29, of 831 W. 50th Pl., and Jones, 27, of 14721 S.
Lexington, Harvey, Ill., were charged with conspiring to possess with the
intent to distribute in excess of 50 grams of mixtures containing cocaine
base, in the form of "crack cocaine," a Schedule II Narcotic Drug
Controlled Substance. The suspects allegedly conspired to sell more than
300 grams of crack cocaine and heroin to an undercover ATF agent, and as
part of the undercover meetings, the suspects negotiated the purchase of
firearms to be used by the gang.
"In response to the tragic deaths of innocent victims because of gang
violence, ATF and the Chicago Police Department joined together to bring
their combined expertise and resources to Englewood in order to curb the
indiscriminate violence, making the community safer for the law abiding
citizens," said ATF Chicago Special Agent in Charge Andrew Traver.
If convicted of the firearms and narcotics violations, the defendants
face a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years in prison and a maximum
sentence of life in prison.
The ongoing investigation is the result of a joint enforcement
operation being conducted by ATF and the Chicago Police Department in the
Englewood community of Chicago. Assistant U.S. Attorney Julie Pekron is
representing the government in the case.
Contact: Special Agent Thomas J. Ahern
Public Information Officer
SOURCE Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives