CHICAGO — A suburban Chicago man has been sentenced to nine years in federal prison for illegally possessing a semi-automatic rifle and numerous semi-automatic handguns.
MARIO PRADO, 28, illegally possessed the firearms on Feb. 14, 2019, in his residence in South Elgin, Ill. Law enforcement on that date conducted a court-authorized search of the residence and discovered the rifle and eight handguns. Prado had previously been convicted of a felony firearm offense in the Circuit Court of Kane County and was not legally allowed to possess a firearm.
Prado pleaded guilty on Nov. 20, 2020, to a federal charge of illegal possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. U.S. District Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman imposed the nine-year sentence Monday after a hearing in federal court in Chicago.
The sentence was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Kristen deTineo, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; and Brendan F. Kelly, Director of the Illinois State Police. The government was represented by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Niranjan Emani.
Holding illegal firearm possessors accountable through federal prosecution is a centerpiece of Project Guardian and Project Safe Neighborhoods. In the Northern District of Illinois, U.S. Attorney Lausch and law enforcement partners have deployed the Guardian and PSN programs to attack a broad range of violent crime issues facing the district, particularly firearm offenses.