Judge inclined to free DEA agent accused of helping gang

CHICAGO (AP) — A federal judge in Chicago says she’s inclined to free a DEA agent on bond pending his trial on charges alleging that he joined the agency specifically to help a murderous Puerto Rican-based group traffic guns and cocaine.

Magistrate Judge Susan Cox said at Tuesday’s detention hearing that the charges against 41-year-old Fernando Gomez “are among the most serious” she’d seen, given the DEA link, but that prosecutors hadn’t shown he is dangerous or a flight risk.

She acknowledged, though, that a New York federal judge overseeing the trafficking-conspiracy case has the final say on Gomez’s release.

Prosecutors allege that Gomez worked for La Organizacion de Narcotraficantes Unidos, or The Organization of United Drug Traffickers, as a suburban Chicago police detective from 2004 and 2011, then joined the DEA. He was arrested last week at the DEA’s Chicago office and will be transferred to New York within weeks.

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