A Colombian burglary crew, who allegedly followed Asian business owners to their homes, has been arrested after police tracked them down and witnessed them burglarizing a Gurnee home.
Kevin E. Vega-Ortiz, 28, who has no known address; Diego Escobar-Medina, 30, of Palatine; and Karen Arguello-Osorio, 29, who has no known address, were charged by a grand jury on Wednesday with residential burglary and possession of burglary tools.
Lake County Assistant State’s Attorney Manuel Mandujano said a law enforcement task force had been following a Colombian residential burglary crew.
Investigators obtained a court-authorized tracker for a Ford Edge used by the suspects after it was following Asian business owners to their homes.
Officers followed the vehicle from Elgin to Gurnee on November 4. Mandujano said the Ford parked and Arguello-Osorio got out first.
Officers moved up to the home after the Ford left and found the door to the basement open and a window next to the basement forced open.
An exterior kitchen door was also open and a bedroom was ransacked, Mandujano said.
Officers followed the Ford and arrested Vega-Ortiz, Escobar-Medina and Arguello-Osorio, who were inside the car.
A pillowcase with jewelry was found and the victims identified the jewelry as theirs, Mandujano said.
Investigators learned Arguello-Osorio knocked on the home’s door to confirm no one was home prior to the burglary.
Arguello-Osorio told the other two suspects to go inside after not receiving an answer, Mandujano said.
Mandujano said Vega-Ortiz went to the backyard and climbed in through a window before opening the door.
Vega-Ortiz was the one who loaded the pillowcase with jewelry from the residence and was assisted by Escobar-Medina, Mandujano said.
Vega-Ortiz, Escobar-Medina and Arguello-Osorio are Colombian nationals.
Lake County Judge Theodore Potkonjak ordered all three suspects held in the Lake County Jail pending trial after prosecutors filed a petition to detain them.