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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Northern District of Illinois
Morris Pasqual, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, May 8, 2024

Man Sentenced to 5 1/2 Years in Prison for Unlawfully Dealing Firearms in Chicago Area

CHICAGO — A federal judge has sentenced a firearms trafficker to five and a half years in prison for unlawfully dealing guns in Chicago.

From April to June of last year, JESUS SANCHEZ sold seven firearms to an undercover law enforcement agent.  Authorities later conducted a court-authorized search of Sanchez’s residence and discovered, among other things, ten firearm magazines and three boxes of .22-caliber ammunition.  When agents arrived to conduct the search, Sanchez ran from the residence and tossed a firearm into a neighbor’s backyard.  Sanchez had previously been convicted of a gun-related felony and was not lawfully allowed to possess a firearm.

Sanchez, 23, of Chicago, pleaded guilty earlier this year to federal firearm offenses.  U.S. District Judge Matthew F. Kennelly imposed the 66-month prison sentence during a hearing Tuesday in federal court in Chicago.

The sentence was announced by Morris Pasqual, Acting United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, Christopher Amon, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and Larry Snelling, Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department.

“Gun trafficking perpetuates the cycle of violence in this city, which is overwhelmed with gun violence,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Margaret A. Steindorf argued in the government’s sentencing memorandum.  “Defendant’s conduct in this case demonstrated not only a complete disregard for the law, but also had the potential to endanger the community.”

Disrupting illegal firearms trafficking is the focus of the Department of Justice’s Firearms Trafficking Strike Force.  As part of the 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.

Holding firearm offenders accountable through federal prosecution is also a centerpiece of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a nationwide initiative that brings together law enforcement officials, prosecutors, community leaders, and other stakeholders to develop comprehensive solutions to the most pressing violent crime problems in a community.  In the Northern District of Illinois, the U.S. Attorney’s Office has deployed the PSN program to attack a broad range of violent crime issues facing the district, particularly firearm offenses.

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