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Federal authorities unveil charges against Chicago gang

November 1, 2021 GMT

CHICAGO (AP) — Federal authorities announced conspiracy charges Monday against a Chicago gang faction accused of 19 murders over two decades.

An indictment alleged 13 members of the “Wicked Town” faction of the Traveling Vice Lords gang were responsible for 19 murders, 19 attempted murders and several armed robberies and assaults back to at least July 2000.

“Wicked Town members regularly promoted their violent enterprise on social media, posting comments, photos and videos to proclaim membership in the gang, taunt rival gang members and boast about murders and other acts of violence,” read a statement from U.S. Attorney John Lausch’s office.

It’s the latest example of conspiracy cases brought by federal authorities who’ve used racketeering statutes against Chicago gangs.

The accused gang members allegedly operated mostly out of Austin, a Chicago neighborhood on the city’s West Side, using “trap houses” to store guns and drugs.

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Federal authorities said that during the multi-year probe, law enforcement seized 46 guns, 1,000 rounds of ammunition and 17 kilograms of cocaine.

All 13 people charged in the case are in police custody. They range in age from 21 to 44. Their arraignments will be scheduled in the U.S. District Court in Chicago.