Man Pleads Guilty to Using Explosive Device in Attempt To Damage Suburban Chicago Restaurant

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CHICAGO — A man has pleaded guilty to a federal criminal charge for using an explosive device in an attempt to damage a suburban Chicago restaurant last year.

On June 1, 2021, DIEGO VARGAS threw a lit explosive device through the window of Egg Harbor Cafe in Naperville, Ill., resulting in two explosions.  Vargas, 26, of Aurora, pleaded guilty Thursday to one count of maliciously attempting to damage and destroy a building by means of an explosive device.  The charge is punishable by a minimum sentence of five years in federal prison and a maximum of 20 years.  U.S. District Judge Elaine E. Bucklo set sentencing for Sept. 2, 2021. 

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The guilty plea was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; and Emmerson Buie, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Office of the FBI.  The Naperville Police Department and Aurora Police Department provided valuable assistance.  The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Barry Jonas and Kate McClelland.

In addition to the restaurant incident, Vargas admitted in a plea agreement that a night earlier he tried to steal cash from an ATM in Aurora.  Vargas admitted that he struck the ATM with a baseball bat and a metal pole from a street sign to try and pry it open.  The ATM, located in the drive-through area of a First Midwest Bank branch in the first block of South Broadway, held more than $50,000 at the time of the attempted theft.

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