CHICAGO | Chicago resident Winston “Worm” Geralds surrendered to federal authorities Tuesday on charges he allegedly conspired to buy at least 43 firearms in Indiana and transport them to Chicago for sale.
A news release from the U.S. attorney’s office detailed charges against Geralds, 24, who is named in a seven-count indictment. Geralds is charged with one count of conspiracy and dealing firearms without a federal license, two counts of illegally transporting firearms across state lines and interstate travel to sell guns without a permit.
The indictment states Geralds allegedly conspired with David Lewisby, 24, of South Holland, and others in an interstate gun trafficking conspiracy.
Geralds was arraigned Tuesday in U.S. District Court and taken into federal custody after pleading not guilty to the charges. A detention hearing is scheduled for Friday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Geraldine Soat Brown.
Geralds allegedly accompanied Lewisby on multiple trips to Crown Point and Indianapolis between April 21 and 25, 2012, where they bought firearms at gun shows and other venues and brought no fewer than 43 guns to Chicago. The guns were sold to an individual who was cooperating with ATF agents, court documents state.
Levaine Tanksley, 29, and Charles Lemle, both of Chicago, sold the guns to individuals cooperating with federal authorities. In April, Tanksley was sentenced to more than 11 years in prison and Lemle to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to illegally possessing firearms as previously convicted felons.
Lewisby was sentenced to 17 years in federal prison following his conviction on charges of dealing firearms without a federal license, two counts of illegally transporting firearms across state lines and two counts of interstate travel to sell guns without a license.
A co-defendant, Maurice “Reece” Strickland, 26, of Chicago, is charged with one count of being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm. Strickland lived at a residence in the 6800 block of South Langley Avenue where Tanksley sold some of the guns he bought from Lewisby. Strickland, arrested on June 9, has pleaded not guilty and remains in federal custody.
All of the illegal guns have been recovered, according to the U.S. Attorney.