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Transnational Gangs

'Krazy Locos' gang leader and 5 gang associates sentenced in homicide, robbery, narcotics and firearms case

MIAMI – The leader of the "Krazy Locos" criminal street gang and five other gang associates were sentenced Thursday for their roles in a case involving two homicides, three non-fatal shootings, narcotics and firearms trafficking, and obstruction of justice.

This case was investigated by the following agencies: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (ICE); the FBI; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF); and Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office (PBCSO).

The following gang members were sentenced on June 16: Jonathan González, the leader of the Krazy Locos criminal street gang; his two brothers, Iván Isidro Santiago and Christopher Gonzalez-Chamberlain; and three other gang members and associates, Manuel Medina, Alejandro Tomas, and Itzel Candela-Campos.

González was a leader of the Krazy Locos, also known as the KL gang, a group composed primarily of juvenile and young adult males, operating primarily in Palm Beach County, Fla. Krazy Locos had been affiliated at times with the Making Life Krazy or MLK gang, which also operated in Palm Beach County. From 2007 through 2009, there were about 40 Krazy Locos gang members and associates.

The Krazy Locos organization made money through by selling controlled substances, primarily oxycodone, Xanax, methadone, cocaine, crack and marijuana. To obtain the prescription medications (oxycodone, Xanax, and methadone), a Krazy Locos member sponsored a patient, that is, pay for the patient's medical visit and prescription, in exchange for a portion of the prescription medication. The gang then re-sold the prescription medication. Gang members also were required to pay "taxes" to the gang on a weekly basis and often resorted to criminal activity to secure the money to pay their "taxes."

In January 2009, Gonzalez ordered Medina, a juvenile gang member, to murder Rolando Franco because Franco was trying to leave the Krazy Locos and Florida to start a new life. In February 2009, Gonzalez ordered his brother Gonzalez-Chamberlain, and two juvenile gang members, Medina and Tomas, to participate in the home invasion-style robbery of an apartment in Lake Worth, Fla., that Gonzalez believed was used as a "stash" house by the 18th Street Gang. Instead, the small apartment was occupied by a family of five adults and seven children who were not involved in drug trafficking. Gonzalez-Chamberlain and Medina attempted to rob the house on Feb. 22, 2009, but they were startled to find Daniel Rivera sitting outside the house. Gonzalez-Chamberlain and Medina both fired shots, killing Daniel Rivera and wounding Angel Rivera. Tomas served as the getaway driver.

In April 2009, Gonzalez ordered Medina and Tomas to shoot up the home of another former Krazy Locos member. The two juveniles went to the home on April 18, 2009, firing several shots into the home. Gonzalez was angry that the two juveniles had not emptied the entire clip in the AK-47-style firearm, so he sent them back to the house on April 22, 2009 to finish the job. On that occasion, Medina fired the weapon into the air, causing damage to a number of homes in the area.

That evening, Gonzalez sold the firearm to an undercover officer as part of a joint federal/local investigation that eventually led to the arrest of Gonzalez and seven other Krazy Locos members and associates. During the undercover operation, undercover PBSO officers along with special agents from ICE HSI, FBI, and ATF, recovered 24 firearms and more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition, along with a bulletproof vest and a grenade.

"These sentences should serve as a stern warning about the consequences awaiting gang members whose actions breed fear and violence in our communities," said Michael Shea, acting special agent in charge of ICE HSI in Miami. "ICE HSI will continue to work closely with its federal and local law enforcement counterparts to attack and dismantle these dangerous criminal organizations and see that those involved are brought to justice."

Gonzalez pleaded guilty to several counts of the fourth superseding indictment, which included the following charges: conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, murder in aid of racketeering, attempted aggravated assault in aid of racketeering, carrying, brandishing, and discharging firearms during crimes of violence, conspiracy to transfer firearms to others for use in crimes of violence and drug trafficking, and felon in possession of firearms. Gonzalez was sentenced to prison and a consecutive term of 135 years in prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release. The judge ordered $58,476 in restitution.

Santiago entered a guilty plea to count one of the fourth superseding indictment, which charged conspiracy to distribute controlled substances. He was separately charged as a juvenile for his role in the murder of Daniel Rivera and, as part of his plea in that case, agreed to dismiss his appeal to the Eleventh Circuit, and agreed to be sentenced as an adult for his role in the murders of Rolando Franco and Daniel Rivera and the shooting of Angel Rivera. Santiago was sentenced to 30 years in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release. The judge ordered $58,476 in restitution.

Gonzalez-Chamberlain pleaded guilty to count nine of the fourth superseding indictment, which charged assault with a deadly weapon in aid of racketeering. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release. Restitution is to be determined at a later time.

Alejandro Tomas was 16 years old at the time of his involvement in the murders of Franco and Daniel Rivera, and the shootings of Angel Rivera and attempted shootings of another Krazy Locos member. He pleaded guilty to 10 counts of the third superseding indictment, which charged conspiracy to engage in Hobbs Act robbery, attempted Hobbs Act robbery, violent crimes in aid of racketeering, carrying, brandishing, discharging a firearm during the commission of a crime of violence, murder during the commission of a firearms offense, and distributing controlled substances. Tomas was sentenced to 19 years in prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release. The judge ordered $24,080 in restitution.

Candela-Campos, who was the girlfriend of Santiago, pleaded guilty to count 35 of the fourth superseding indictment, which charged conspiracy to use intimidation, threats, and corrupt persuasion to prevent the testimony of another, or to alter, destroy, or conceal objects needed in an official proceeding. Candela-Campos was sentenced to 40 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release.

Medina, who was 17 years old at the time of the charged offenses, was originally charged as a juvenile, and the United States filed a motion to transfer him to adult status. The motion was granted and the United States filed second superseding information, which charged Medina as an adult with his involvement in two homicides. On Aug. 6, 2010, Medina entered a plea of guilty to all charges contained in the second superseding information. Medina admitted that he was the person who shot and killed both Franco and Daniel Rivera upon the orders of Gonzalez, and that the killing of Franco was his initiation rite to enter the Krazy Locos. Judge Marra re-sentenced Medina to 420 months (35 years) in prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release, and $34,396 restitution.