News Release
April 28, 2008
Contact: Thomas E. Murphy
(314) 538-4660

Illinois Man Sentenced to 18 years Imprisonment for Attemped Murder/Racketeering

APR 28 --Davenport, IA - On April 28, 2008, Ramon MORALES, age 25, of Moline, IL, was sentenced to 220 months imprisonment, having previously pleaded guilty to two counts of attempted murder in aid of racketeering and one count of using and carrying a firearm during, and in relation to the attempted murders, announced United States Attorney Matthew G. Whitaker. United States District Judge John A. Jarvey also ordered Morales to serve three years on supervised release following imprisonment, and pay an assessment of $300 to the Crime Victim Fund. Morales recently completed a separate term in federal prison, having completed 64 months of imprisonment stemming from his conviction in August 2003 on an unrelated firearms offenses.

Morales was the leader of a faction of the Lowriders, a Quad Cities area street gang engaged in acts of attempted murder, kidnaping, firearms offenses, and drug trafficking. The gang was headquartered in Davenport, IA, and Morales was the leader of a Moline, IL, based faction. On May 12, 2002, Morales carried out a drive-by shooting of the leader of a rival street gang in East Moline, IL, striking the rival gang leader’s car with gunshots but missing the gang leader. On May 20, 2002, Morales again fired shots at the rival gang leader, hitting his car but again missing the gang leader. On January 19, 2003, while the rival gang leader sat on his porch in East Moline, Morales ran up to the gang leader and shot him in the face with a handgun, resulting in serious bodily injury but not death.

Morales subsequently was prosecuted by state authorities in Rock Island County in connection with the May 12, 2002, shooting, receiving a sentence of two years probation and imprisonment for time served (about 90 days). Federal prosecutions involved the May 20, 2002, and January 19, 2003, shootings.

This case was prosecuted by the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Iowa and investigated by the United State Drug Enforcement Administration, FBI Gang Task Force, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Quad Cities MEG, Moline Police Department, East Moline Police Department, Rock Island Police Department, and Davenport Police Department.

The case was part of a long-running and continuing series of prosecutions to dismantle and disrupt street gangs in the Southern District of Iowa. In the Quad Cities, this has involved a partnership of virtually all federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies in the area.