CHICAGO — Four men have been charged with federal firearm offenses for allegedly trafficking guns from St. Louis to Chicago.
Criminal complaints filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago accuse ROBERT NARUP of buying firearms at gun shows throughout the United States and illegally selling them to JEROME BOYKIN in St. Louis, Mo. Boykin then brought the guns to Chicago and sold them to ROGELIO MANCERA in exchange for marijuana, the charges allege. Mancera re-sold the guns to RODOLFO ORTEGA, who in turn would sell them to various buyers on the streets of Chicago, the charges allege.
Narup, 71, of Washington, Mo., is charged with willfully dealing firearms without a license. He was arrested on Oct. 15, 2021, in the St. Louis area after allegedly selling 18 firearms and two silencers to an undercover law enforcement agent in a retail store parking lot. Narup appeared Monday in U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Missouri. He will appear in federal court in Chicago on a date to be set.
Boykin, 30, of St. Louis, Mo., is charged with possessing a firearm during a drug trafficking crime. He was arrested in the Chicago area on Oct. 8, 2021, after allegedly selling more than 20 firearms to Mancera in exchange for marijuana. Boykin made an initial appearance Wednesday in federal court in Chicago.
Mancera, 27, of Schaumburg, Ill., is charged with willfully dealing firearms without a license. He was arrested Tuesday after federal agents searched his storage locker in Schaumburg and discovered more than 25 firearms, including machine guns, the complaint states. Mancera made an initial appearance this morning in federal court in Chicago.
Ortega, 26, of Chicago, is charged with illegally possessing two firearms that he allegedly sold to an individual in Chicago on Oct. 5, 2021. As a previously convicted felon, Ortega was not lawfully allowed to possess a firearm. He was arrested Monday and is scheduled to appear for a detention hearing this afternoon in federal court in Chicago.
The charges 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 David Brown, Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Megan DeMarco represents the government.
ATF and CPD’s recently created Gun Investigations Team investigated the case. Valuable assistance was provided by the ATF St. Louis Field Office of the ATF Kansas City, Mo., Field Division, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of Missouri.
Disrupting illegal firearms trafficking is a centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s cross-jurisdictional strike force aimed at reducing gun violence. As part of the Chicago firearms trafficking strike force, the U.S. Attorney’s Office collaborates with ATF, CPD, and other federal, state, and local law enforcement partners in the Northern District of Illinois and across the country to help stem the supply of illegally trafficked firearms and identify patterns, leads, and potential suspects in violent gun crimes.
The public is reminded that complaints 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. The firearm charge against Boykin carries a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in federal prison and a maximum of life. The charge against Ortega is punishable by up to ten years, while the charges against Narup and Mancera carry a maximum of five years. If convicted, the Court must impose reasonable sentences under federal sentencing statutes and the advisory U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.