Hartford Gang Member Sentenced to 11 Years in Federal Prison for Kidnapping and Firearm Offenses
John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that JOSUE FRANCO, also known as “Sway,” 24, of Hartford, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Kari A. Dooley in Bridgeport to 132 months of imprisonment, followed by five years of supervised release, for a kidnapping and violent assault he committed with four other members of the Almighty Latin Kings Nation (“Latin Kings”).
According to court documents and statements made in court, on January 26, 2018, Franco and Anthony Carillo lured an individual (“the victim”) to a residence on Benton Street in Hartford. When the victim entered the residence, Jonathan Otero and Luis Pitt were waiting. Franco, Otero, Pitt and Carillo then threatened, assaulted and tortured the victim, prevented him from leaving the residence, and demanded a ransom. After the victim was restrained, Pedro Carillo arrived at the residence and participated in the ongoing assault and torture of the victim, which included burning him with cigarettes, pistol-whipping him and throwing a dart into his foot.
The defendants forced the victim to call someone to deliver money in exchange for his release. The victim then called his father. Franco grabbed the phone and told the victim’s father if he did not deliver $500 they were going to kill his son. After the call, Otero put a bullet in the victim’s hand and told him he would use that bullet to shoot him in the head if the victim could not get the ransom money.
Franco and others then drove the victim to different locations in Hartford in an effort to collect ransom.
The victim was eventually released. He was subsequently treated at a hospital for a fractured cheekbone, a facial laceration, a concussion and other injuries.
Franco has been detained since his arrest on October 16, 2018. On September 19, 2019, he pleaded guilty to one count of assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering, and one count of using, carrying and brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence.
The other four defendants also pleaded guilty to related charges. On December 10, 2019, Otero was sentenced to 154 months of imprisonment. Pitt, Anthony Carillo and Pedro Carillo are detained while awaiting sentencing.
This matter has been investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Northern Connecticut Violent Crimes Gang Task Force and the Hartford Police Department. The Task Force includes members of the Hartford Police Department, East Hartford Police Department, Connecticut State Police and Connecticut Department of Correction. The Hartford Police Department’s Major Crimes Division has provided critical assistance to the investigation.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian P. Leaming.