Gang's reputed ‘king' among 33 charged in drug conspiracy - New York News

Gang's reputed ‘king' among 33 charged in drug conspiracy

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CHICAGO (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

The leader of a West Side gang and 32 others were charged Wednesday with participating in a narcotics enterprise responsible for a 2011 murder and other acts of violence, the Sun-Times is reporting.

Nathaniel Hoskins, 45, the reputed head of the Imperial Insane Vice Lords, is among 10 defendants charged in federal court with racketeering. They and 14 others ranging in age from 21 to 52 also were charged with conspiracy to distribute heroin. Nine others were charged separately in Cook County Criminal Court.

The gang's stronghold was at Thomas and Keystone, where it operated a drug market, officials said. But the investigation targeted several other West Side drug spots and one in Wicker Park near North and Damen, police said.

The drug conspiracy dated to 1996, authorities said.

Hoskins — ranked as the "king" of the gang — allegedly ordered the killing of Marcus Hurley on April 27, 2011. The hitman, Andre Brown, was shot to death on June 2, 2012.

Hurley and Brown both were killed near the gang's stronghold at Thomas and Keystone.

The gang also was involved in a Jan. 5, 2010, shooting of a victim not identified in the indictment. Joseph "Little Joe" Faulkner—another defendant who was ranked "prince"— ordered the shooting, prosecutors said.

The indictment alleges Julian "Light Bright" Martin and Torrie King — two members with the rank of "Five Star Universal Elite" — conspired with gang member Raymond "Boozak" Myles to murder an individual on May 4, 2011. The indictment does not say whether the killing was carried out. King remains at large.

Hoskins, Faulkner, Martin, King and Myles all face life sentences if convicted.

Prosecutors said Hoskins maintained a residence in Las Vegas. He was arrested Monday at O'Hare Airport as he tried to leave Chicago, officials said.

He appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jeffrey Cole on Tuesday in a gray sweatsuit and was ordered held in custody along with nine other co-defendants until a bond hearing set for next week.

A 10th defendant who appeared before Cole — 21-year-old Sarah Watkins — was released on bond.

The Chicago Police Organized Crime Bureau launched the investigation. Later, it partnered with the U.S. DEA's strike force, with other federal agencies also involved.

Wednesday's charges follow two related drug busts last year and come just a week after members of another street gang — the hyper-violent Hobos — were taken down in a separate federal racketeering case.

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