US Attorney's Office, Chicago police announce 17 charged in drug trafficking investigation

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Illinois announced Thursday charges against 17 suspects as part of a multi-year drug-trafficking probe.

The investigation, known as "Operation Tragic Blow," was a joint effort by local and federal law enforcement and led to seizures of cocaine and heroin in Chicago.

Charged with a federal drug offense are: Varnell Allen, 41, of Dolton, Ill.; Ulises Avina, 32, of Chicago; Oscar Balderama, 42, of Chicago; Celestino Barahona-Aerrano, 38, of Chicago; Diego Galeana-Gonzaga, 35, of Mexico; Margarito Galeana-Gomez, 36, of Mexico; Jose Gonzaga, 58, of Chicago; Rafael Medellin, Jr., 32, of Chicago; Richard C. Rincon, 39, of Oak Lawn, Ill.; Juan Rosas-Cabrera, 31, of Mexico; Sergio Sanchez-Chavez, 36, of Mexico; Francisco Sanchez-Vanez, 32, of Chicago; Antonio Segura, 39, of Oak Lawn, Ill.; Jorge A. Valdez, 40, of Chicago; Virginia Vazquez-Perez, 37, of Cicero, Ill.; Delvin Williams, 42, of Chicago; and Rafael Zarco-Picazo, 33, of Chicago.

The U.S. Attorney's Office said authorities seized 14 kilograms of cocaine in the Belmont Cragin neighborhood and two kilograms of heroin in a high-rise apartment building in the Buena Park neighborhood as part of the probe.
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