01/24/2023 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 01/25/2023 07:58
HAMMOND- Keenan Seymour, 23, of Chicago, Illinois, was sentenced by United States District Court Judge Philip P. Simon after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit racketeering activity for his role and participation in the Latin Dragons street gang, announced United States Attorney Clifford D. Johnson.
Seymour was sentenced to 180 months in prison followed by 2 years of supervised release. As part of his sentencing, he was held responsible for a November 2017 murder.
According to the Sixth Superseding Indictment returned on June 18, 2020, the Latin Dragons Nation is a criminal street gang that originated in Chicago and spread to other areas, including the Northern District of Indiana. It was alleged that members and associates of the Latin Dragons Nation engaged in acts of violence, including murder, attempted murder, witness tampering, and assault, to protect the gang's territory.
In addition to Seymour, 18 other co-defendants pled guilty to participating in the racketeering conspiracy. Many of the defendants were held responsible for murders and other violent crimes they committed in Chicago and Northwest Indiana. Several of the co-defendants were sentenced as follows:
Ralph Mendez, Jr. was sentenced to 42.5 years in prison, and was held responsible for a May 2017 gang-related drive-by shooting/murder and another drive-by shooting/murder committed in July 2017.
Justin Anaya was sentenced to 35 years in prison and was held responsible for the July 2017 murder of a minor child and a November 2017 murder where he shot and killed a man while riding in a car.
Gustavo Mata was sentenced to 35 years in prison and was held responsible for a July 2012 murder where he shot the victim from the back porch of a residence.
Manuel Diaz was sentenced to 35 years in prison and was held responsible for a September 2017 murder where he shot and killed a man while driving in a car.
Jonathan Arevalo was sentenced to 20 years in prison and was held responsible for providing a firearm for a July 2012 murder and a March 2015 gang-related felony murder.
Luis Colunga was sentenced to 17 years in prison and was held responsible for a December 2012 felony murder.
Javier Aguilera was sentenced to 18 years in prison and was held responsible for a December 2013 shooting from a car.
Ralph Daniel Mendez was sentenced to 17 years in prison and was held responsible for an April 2017 drive-by shooting.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; the Chicago Police Department Criminal Enterprise Unit; the Cook County Sheriff's Office; the Bartlett Police Department; the Hammond Police Department; the East Chicago Police Department; the Merrillville Police Department; the Hobart Police Department; the Lake County Sheriff's Department; and the Calumet City Police Department, with assistance from the Lake County, Indiana Prosecutor's Office, the Cook County, Illinois State's Attorney's Office, the Indiana Department of Corrections, and the Illinois Department of Corrections. This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Kevin F. Wolff and Michael J. Toth, and former Northern District of Indiana Assistant United States Attorney Joseph A. Cooley, with assistance from the Criminal Division's Organized Crime and Gang Section, Trial Attorney Hans Miller.
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.