us attorney for northern district of illinois

Man Gets 12 Years in Prison for Selling Guns to Chicago Gang Members

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A man convicted of selling guns out of his bedroom to Chicago gang members was sentenced to 12 years in federal prison last week.

David Santiago, 39, pleaded guilty last year to two counts of illegal possession of firearms, the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Northern District of Illinois said in a statement. The sentence was handed down April 15.

Santiago had previously been convicted of multiple felonies and was not legally allowed to possess a firearm, the attorney’s office said.

Prosecutors said Santiago sold guns out of his home in Chicago Lawn, many of which went to people whom he knew were gang members.

He boasted to buyers that the guns were “clean” and “brand new,” prosecutors said, and were purportedly obtained in Kansas.

During one sale, the buyer discussed how he intended to give a gun to a younger member of a gang, to which Santiago replied that he was going to provide one to the “guys” as well, prosecutors said. The buyer was cooperating with law enforcement and recorded the interaction.

Investigators seized 16 guns including rifles and semi-automatic handguns, prosecutors said. More than 100 grams of heroin were also recovered as Santiago also sold drugs out of his home.

“Santiago was running an illegal gun store from his bedroom,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy J. Storino argued in the government’s sentencing memorandum. “The over-proliferation of firearms in this city and the easy access of firearms in the hands of persons who should not have them has a direct correlation to the cyclical gun violence epidemic in Chicago.”

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