CHICAGO — A joint federal and local criminal investigation in the far north suburbs of Chicago has resulted in federal drug or firearm charges against four individuals. Lake County Sheriff’s Office Special Investigations Group (SIG) also announced that the operation resulted in the arrest of six other suspects in an operation that consisted of detectives, agents and staff from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Homeland Security (HSI), the Lake County Forest Preserve Police, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office, the Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office, the North Chicago Police Department, the Park City Police Department, the Round Lake Beach Police Department, the Wauconda Police Department, the Waukegan Police Department, and the Zion Police Department.
The alleged drug trafficking and illegal firearm possession occurred last winter in Waukegan and Beach Park, according to indictments unsealed this week in U.S. District Court in Chicago. According to the charges, Robert Spurlock, 36, of Beach Park, distributed cocaine and illegally possessed a loaded handgun with an obliterated serial number; Kurt Nash, Jr., 34, of Milwaukee, Wisc., distributed cocaine on two occasions; Rafael Alvarez-Murill, 27, of Waukegan, distributed methamphetamine and illegally possessed a handgun; and Jason Najera-Prado, 31, of Waukegan, illegally possessed two handguns. Spurlock, Alvarez-Murillo, and Najera-Prado were previously convicted of felonies and were not lawfully allowed to possess firearms.
Spurlock, Nash, and Najera-Prado pleaded not guilty during arraignments Wednesday in federal court in Chicago. Arraignment for Alvarez-Murillo will be scheduled at a later date. Six other individuals were charged in state court as part of this investigation. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office this week also released information on the multi-agency law enforcement operation that took numerous street gang members into custody and dismantled a street gang operation (Satan Disciples) in Lake County.
Booking photos were not initially available for these four defendants.
The federal indictments were announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Kristen de Tineo, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; and John Idleburg, Lake County Sheriff. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Shawn McCarthy and Alejandro Ortega represent the government in the federal cases.
This investigation is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies.
The public is reminded that indictments contain only charges and are not evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. If convicted, the Court must impose reasonable sentences under federal sentencing statutes and the advisory U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.
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Photos supplied by the Lake County Sheriff’s Office