The Chicago Syndicate

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Boss of Huge Sinaloa Cartel-Linked Fentanyl and Heroin Trafficking Network Put Away for 33 Years #OperationCookout

The ringleader behind an extensive drug trafficking ring was sentenced to 33 years in prison for distributing large amounts of fentanyl, heroin, and cocaine in Newport News and North Carolina.

“This defendant served in a significant leadership role as the regional distributor of heroin, fentanyl, and cocaine for the Sinaloa Cartel, one of the most prolific and violent cartels in the world,” said Raj Parekh, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. “EDVA will continue working with our law enforcement partners to combat these transnational criminal organizations in order to protect the health and safety of our communities.”

According to court documents, Ramiro Ramirez-Barreto, 44, from the Mexican State of Morelos, operated a continuing criminal enterprise with ties to Virginia, North Carolina, and California. Ramirez-Barreto was linked to the Sinaloa Cartel in Mexico, as were his drug sources, and his operation supplied cocaine, heroin, and fentanyl to numerous drug trafficking organizations in Newport News, Virginia, and in Henderson and Greensboro, North Carolina. According to one of Ramirez-Barreto’s many North Carolina customers, Ramirez-Barreto supplied him with 60 kilograms of heroin from early 2018 to mid-2019. Another one of Ramirez-Barreto’s customers was an inmate in federal prison operating a drug trafficking organization in Henderson, North Carolina, using a bootleg mobile phone.

In addition to his sentence, Ramirez-Barreto was ordered to pay a forfeiture money judgment of $4,200,000 and forfeit his house in Lawrenceville. Barreto was arrested in 2019 as a result of Operation Cookout.

Background on Operation Cookout

In August 2019, over 120 law enforcement officers from 30 law enforcement agencies in Virginia, North Carolina, and Texas executed a major operation, known as Operation Cookout, which resulted in 35 defendants being arrested for their respective roles in the conspiracy, along with the seizure of 24 firearms, 30 kilograms of fentanyl, 30 kilograms of heroin, 5 kilograms of cocaine, and over $700,000 in cash.
To date, 45 total defendants have been charged in Operation Cookout. All 45 defendants have admitted their criminal conduct and pleaded guilty. Thus far, 41 defendants have been sentenced, with the majority being sentenced to prisons terms ranging from two to ten years, and five defendants sentenced between 15 to 25 years in prison.

These prosecutions are part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force’s (OCDETF) investigation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten the United States by using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.

The following law enforcement agencies provided significant assistance during the investigation and arrest operation: U.S. Marshals Service, Newport News Sheriff’s Office, Chesapeake Sheriff’s Office, York-Poquoson Sheriff’s Office, Tennessee Highway Patrol, Amarillo Police, and Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office. Approximately 30 law enforcement agencies assisted in the arrest operation in Virginia, North Carolina, and Texas.

Friday, July 09, 2021

GOP Mob Buster who Initiated the #1 Rated Organized Crime Investigation in the Country Seeks Political Office

William P. Ready has announced his intention to run for the Board of Selectmen ahead of the Tuesday, July 20, GOP Caucus.

Skills developed during Mr. Ready’s 30 years in the FBI as both field agent and supervisor are directly transferable to public office, he noted. “I have led teams investigating complex, criminal organizations in New York City, Fairfield and New Haven counties. To achieve our objectives, I had to be proficient in problem resolution, community relations, personnel coordination and budget oversight. The job demanded I be ethical and confidential. I feel these abilities are invaluable to a town official.”

Mr. Ready and his wife, Barbara, moved to Southbury in 2003. As their three boys grew up, he became involved with coaching in Southbury Youth Baseball and volunteering in the local Boy Scouts of America program. He has held positions of assistant scoutmaster for Troop 5 in Middlebury, assistant scoutmaster for Troop 1607 and scoutmaster for Troop 60 in Southbury.

During his tenure as scoutmaster for Troop 60, seven young men achieved the rank of Eagle Scout. His troops participated in dozens of service projects at the Audubon Center, Platt Farm and Phillips Farm. Bill and his family attend Cornerstone Church in Oxford.

Most recently, Mr. Ready organized the Law Enforcement Appreciation Rally held May 15 at Playhouse Corner. “I felt strongly that the local, state and federal law enforcement officials in our community deserved our recognition and support. I also wanted to honor those officers across the country who have recently lost their lives in the line of duty.

“It was a well-attended event, and I think we raised awareness of the dramatically increasing number of officers lost each year.”

In early 1996, Mr. Ready initiated a RICO investigation into the Gambino crime family. After considerable effort and development, the investigation became the number-one rated organized crime investigation in the country. By mid-1999 the investigation resulted in the arrest and conviction of Gambino family boss John “Junior” Gotti and more than 40 members and associates of the Gambino and Genovese crime families.

In 2002, Mr. Ready initiated and ran the investigation now known as “Operation Last Camp.” This became the number-one rated organized crime investigation in the country in 2004. By 2005, the investigation resulted in the arrest and conviction of then Gambino family boss Arnold “The Beast” Squitieri and 39 members and associates of the Gambino, Luchese and Genovese families. “Operation Last Camp” in the end dismantled several family crews and caused a significant disruption to the hierarchy of the Gambino family.

Each investigation was heralded in different episodes of the television show “60 Minutes” and written about in two different books.

After 9-11 occurred, Mr. Ready, who was serving in Manhattan Division, became a counter-terrorism agent working on the “Penttbom” investigation. After transferring to the New Haven Division, Mr. Ready participated in the FBI investigations into the murder of Yale University grad student Anne Le in 2009 and the Sandy Hook School massacre in 2012.

Following his retirement from the FBI, Mr. Ready briefly served as adjunct professor at the University of New Haven, Criminal Justice Program.

Mr. Ready holds a juris doctor from Western New England University, B.A. in economics and sociology from Fairfield University with additional training in navigating strategic change from Northwestern University and money laundering and asset forfeiture, surveillance photography from John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

He graduated from the FBI Academy in Quantico, Va., and maintained secret and top secret security clearances throughout his career. He is the recipient of the Award for Excellence from the President’s Council on Integrity and Efficiency, the Attorney General’s Award for Excellence in Law Enforcement and 11 FBI Incentive Awards for conducting and completing major successful investigations.

“I look forward to volunteering my time and talents on the Board of Selectmen for the betterment of Southbury,” Mr. Ready said.

Wednesday, July 07, 2021

Oath Keepers Member Arrested on Conspiracy Charges Related to the January 6th Insurrection and Attack on the US Capitol

A Florida man and member of the Oath Keepers was arrested for crimes related to the Insurrection of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, which disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress that was in the process of ascertaining and counting the electoral votes related to the presidential election.

David Moerschel, 43, of Punta Gorda, is charged with federal offenses that include conspiracy and obstruction of an official proceeding. The Oath Keepers are a large but loosely organized collection of individuals, some of whom are affiliated with militias.

According to court documents, Moerschel and others planned and participated in an operation to interfere with the certification of the electoral college vote on Jan. 6, and coordinated with others in advance, using websites and social media to recruit other participants before traveling to Washington. As alleged, Moerschel joined and participated in an invitation-only encrypted Signal message group titled “OK FL DC OP Jan 6.” Moerschel also attended GoToMeetings with individuals affiliated with the Oath Keepers, with session names such as “ok florida,” “florida dc op planning chat” and “dc planning call.”

On Jan. 6, Moerschel was captured on surveillance footage with other Oath Keepers, including charged defendant Kelly Meggs, walking towards the eastern fa├žade of the Capitol at 2:27 p.m. Moerschel joined in a military-stack formation of individuals moving up through the crowd toward the east doors of the Capitol. Moerschel and others from the stack were captured on surveillance video inside the Capitol shortly after the Capitol’s east Rotunda doors were breached around 2:40 p.m.

In the six months since Jan. 6, more than 535 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including over 165 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement. The investigation remains ongoing.

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Former Enforcer of Latin Kings Sentenced to 8 Years in Prison

A former Enforcer for the New Bedford Chapter of the Massachusetts Almighty Latin King and Queen Nation (Latin Kings) was sentenced on drug charges.

Jeremia Medina, a/k/a “King Sweepy,” 33, was sentenced by U.S. Senior District Court Judge Rya W. Zobel to eight years in prison and three years of supervised release. On March 10, 2021, Medina pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute, manufacture and possess with intent to distribute cocaine base.

Medina was a former Enforcer of the New Bedford Chapter of the Latin Kings and conspired with other gang members to distribute, manufacture and possess with intent to distribute cocaine and cocaine base. As Enforcer, Medina was a leader of the New Bedford Chapter charged with organizing violent acts by the gang and administering violations and other violence. Medina also conspired with other Latin Kings members and leaders to operate a vast drug trafficking network throughout New Bedford, using a number of multi-unit apartment buildings controlled by the Latin Kings, known as trap houses. Medina was also recorded on video participating in multiple beatings of individuals targeted by the gang.

The Latin Kings are a violent criminal enterprise comprised of thousands of members across the United States. The Latin Kings adhere to a national manifesto, employ an internal judiciary and use a sophisticated system of communication to maintain the hierarchy of the organization. As alleged in court documents, the gang uses drug distribution to generate revenue, and engages in violence against witnesses and rival gangs to further its influence and to protect its turf.

In December 2019, a federal grand jury returned an indictment alleging racketeering conspiracy, drug conspiracy and firearms charges against 62 leaders, members and associates of the Latin Kings. Medina is the 32nd defendant to be sentenced in the case.

This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach.

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Vagos, Mongols, and Outlaws: My Infiltration of America's Deadliest Biker Gangs

Vagos, Mongols, and Outlaws: My Infiltration of America's Deadliest Biker Gangs.

The basis for the hit TV series Gangland Undercover!


The gripping account from an ex-con who went undercover to help the ATF infiltrate three of America's most violent biker gangs.

Despite lacking any experience with motorcycle gangs, Charles Falco infiltrated three of America's deadliest biker gangs: the Vagos, Mongols, and Outlaws. In separate investigations that spanned years and coasts, Falco risked his life, suffering a fractured neck and a severely torn shoulder, working deep under cover to bring violent sociopaths to justice.

His dedication was profound; Falco spent almost three years infiltrating the Vagos gang and rose to second in command of the Victorville, California chapter. He even served time in San Bernardino's Murder Unit and endured solitary confinement to protect his cover and the investigations. Falco recorded confessions of gangland-style killings and nearly became a target himself before he sought refuge in the Witness Protection Program. But discontent to remain on the sidelines and motivated by a strong sense of duty, Falco eventually left the Program and volunteer his talents again to infiltrate the Mongols and Outlaws, rising in rank to Vice President of the Petersburg, Virginia Outlaws chapter.

His efforts culminated in sixty two arrests of members for various crimes, including assault and murder. Executing one of this country's most successful RICO prosecutions and effectively crippling the criminal enterprise, Falco's engrossing narrative of the dangers of the biker underworld harkens back to Hunter S. Thompson's classic Hell's Angels, vividly recounting a life undercover.


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