Cook County prosecutors charged five people in a racketeering scheme in which the suspects at times posed as police to rob drug cartel stash houses.
This is only the second time since the law was passed in 2012 that Cook County prosecutors have used the RICO statue concerning an alleged criminal enterprise.
Four men and one woman, who prosecutors identify as the P-K street gang, operated a sophisticated criminal ring. Authorities say the four men posed as police officers to rob drug cartel stash houses for heroin, cocaine and cash.
Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez says the investigation began in October 2013 after one of the suspects tried to murder a potential witness in a separate kidnapping case.
“The P-K street crew would commit 5 to 6 major drug rips a year posing as police officers,” Alvarez said. “In these rips, as they are called, the crew, through information they would gather from Chicago street gang members, would determine the location and the contents of the so-called stash houses.”
The judge denied bond to the four male suspects Saturday.
The FBI, the Cook County Sheriff’s Department, the Chicago Police Department and several other agencies are part of this investigation. Alvarez says the four have all served time before they are facing up to 60 years in prison if they are found guilty in this case.