A leader of the Almighty Imperial Gangsters Nation pleaded guilty today to participating in a racketeering conspiracy involving murder, attempted murder, robbery, aggravated battery, aggravated assault and narcotics distribution.

Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Special Agent in Charge Michael J. Anderson of the FBI’s Chicago Division and Special Agent in Charge George L. Piro of the FBI’s Miami Division made the announcement.

Rogelio Perez, aka Popeye, 44, of Chicago, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Cecelia M. Altonaga of the Southern District of Florida to one count of conspiracy to conduct and participate in the affairs of the Almighty Imperial Gangsters Nation through a pattern of racketeering activity.  Sentencing is scheduled for Feb. 24, 2017.

According to admissions made in connection with his plea, the Almighty Imperial Gangsters Nation is a criminal organization whose members and associates engaged in acts of violence, including murder, attempted murder, aggravated battery, aggravated assault, narcotics distribution, and other criminal activities, and which operated in the Southern District of Florida, the Northern District of Illinois and the Northern District of Indiana, among other places.  Perez joined the Chicago-area chapter of the Almighty Imperial Gangsters Nation in approximately 1990 and rose to the level of “street leader” in approximately 2006, which he remained until his incarceration in June 2012.  While a “street leader,” Perez conducted meetings with Chicago-area Almighty Imperial Gangsters Nation and local gang leaders in an effort to strike alliances.  In November 2011 and February 2012, Perez admitted that he traveled to Miami to meet the South Florida-area chapter of the Almighty Imperial Gangsters Nation to facilitate the criminal activities of the gang.  On July 17, 2009, Perez also ordered members of the gang to retaliate against a rival gang in response to a shooting of an Almighty Imperial Gangster’s Nation.

In addition, Perez that admitted that he and other members of the Almighty Imperial Gangsters Nation earned money for members and financed the gang’s activities through trafficking in controlled substances, including cocaine, cocaine base, heroin, ecstasy and marijuana.  Perez and other members of the Almighty Imperial Gangster’s Nation would use firearms, threats and acts of violence to facilitate their drug trafficking.

The FBI’s Miami and Chicago Field Offices investigated the case with the Miami-Dade Police Department; the City of Miami Police Department; the Chicago Police Department, the Franklin Park, Illinois, Police Department; and the East Chicago Police Department.  The U.S. Attorney’s Offices for the Northern District of Indiana and the Northern District of Illinois; the FBI and ATF field offices in Merrillville, Indiana; the State Attorney’s Offices of Miami-Dade and Broward Counties in Florida; the State Attorney’s Offices in Cook and Du Page Counties in Illinois; and the Florida Department of Correction and the Broward County Sheriff’s Office assisted with this case.  Trial Attorneys Joseph A. Cooley, Rebecca A. Staton and Nicolas J. Regalia of the Criminal Division’s Organized Crime and Gang Section and the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Southern District of Florida’s Forfeiture Section are prosecuting the case

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