United States Attorney David Capp

Northern District of Indiana

5400 Federal Plaza, Suite 1500

Hammond, Indiana  46320

Hammond                                                      South Bend                                           Fort Wayne

 
 

 


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                         CONTACT: Mary Hatton

April 11, 2012                                                                                     PHONE: (219) 937-5603

www.usdoj.gov/usao/inn/                                                                                                  FAX (219) 852-2770

 

 

INDICTMENT RETURNED CHARGING THREE ADDITIONAL MEN IN MAJOR STREET GANG RICO CONSPIRACY

 

 

                Hammond, Indiana - United States Attorney David Capp announced a Second Superseding Indictment charging three additional individuals alleged to be members of the Imperial Gangsters street gang in a twenty-six count indictment unsealed today. 

 

            United States Attorney Capp stated, “This indictment is the result of our ongoing, cooperative law enforcement effort against criminal organizations.  We will continue to aggressively investigate these criminal organizations and their members and, where appropriate, seek federal indictments.”

 

            The Indictment charges the following individuals:

 

            Robert Lockhart, 19, of East Chicago, Indiana is charged with one count of conspiracy to participate in racketeering activity.  This RICO conspiracy count alleges that Lockhart participated in the murder of Miguel Colon in February, 2010, the shooting of three individuals in September, 2009, and the attempted murder of another individual in August, 2008.  Lockhart is also charged with one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and distribute one hundred kilograms or more of marijuana.

 

Armando Jose Velasquez, 25, of East Chicago, Indiana, is charged with one count of conspiracy to participate in racketeering activity and two counts related to the attempted murder of an individual in December, 2011.  The RICO conspiracy count alleges that in addition to shooting the above-mentioned individual multiple times, Velasquez shot at who he thought were rival gang members on multiple occasions.  On one of these occasions in June, 2004, Velasquez shot and killed a bystander.  Velasquez is also charged with one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and distribute one hundred kilograms or more of marijuana.

 

Anthony Baldazo, 24, of East Chicago, Indiana is charged with one count of conspiracy to participate in racketeering activity, and with the murder of Juan Murillo, Sr., and attempted murder of Juan Murillo, Jr. in March 2007.   Baldazo is also charged with one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and distribute one hundred kilograms or more of marijuana.

 

Lockhart, Velasquez and Baldazo are currently in custody.  The United States Attorney’s Office has filed motions to detain all three without bond.  Baldazo has a detention hearing on Monday, April 16 at 2:30 before United States Magistrate Judge Andrew P. Rodovich.  The detention hearings for Lockhart and Valsquez have not yet been set.

 

 

The Second Superseding Indictment again names the following individuals who had been in the previous indictment:

 

            Juan Briseno, 22, of Hammond, Indiana

            Galo Benjamin Feliciano, 23, of East Chicago, Indiana

Guillermo Briseno, 26, of East Chicago, Indiana

Justin Weaver, 19, of Hammond, Indiana

Michael Anthony Castillo, 20, of East Chicago, Indiana

David Almaraz, 24, of Hammond, Indiana

            Joseph Rene Torres, 20, of East Chicago, Indiana

Jason Medina, 28, of East Chicago, Indiana

Edward Raye Serna, 32, of Gary, Indiana

 

            All of these individuals remain charged with one count of conspiracy to participate in racketeering activity, and now face one new count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and distribute one hundred kilograms of marijuana.  In addition, Galo Feliciano is charged with Anthony Baldazo in two new murder counts stemming from the March, 2007 homicide of Juan Murillo, Sr. and one attempted murder count stemming from shooting Juan Murillo, Jr. in the same incident.  Juan Briseno is charged with two new counts stemming from the attempted murder of an individual in August, 2008.  Alejandro Briseno, 21, of Hammond, Indiana, remains charged with one count of accessory after the fact.

 

            This case is being investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the East Chicago Police Department, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with assistance from the Hammond Police Department and the Lake County HIDTA.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David J. Nozick.

 

 

The United States Attorney's Office emphasized that an Indictment is merely an allegation and that all persons charged are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

 

 If convicted in court,  any specific sentence to be imposed will be determined by the judge after a consideration of federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.