Downers Grove man sentenced in murder-for-hire scheme
A Downers Grove man who was convicted last year in a murder-for-hire scheme aimed at killing a federal prosecutor and a drug enforcement agent has been sentenced to life in prison.
Frank Caira was accused of attempting to recruit a member of a Chicago street gang to kill the federal officials because they were involved in prosecuting him on marijuana and methamphetamine charges.
Drug Enforcement Administration agent Patrick Bagley, targeted in the plot, told U.S. District Judge Suzanne Conlon on Friday he was afraid for his family because of the plot.
Federal authorities were tipped off by a gang member came forward after being approached by 41-year-old Caira's co-conspirator, Jack Mann.
Mann, a onetime Naperville insurance agent who cooperated with prosecutors, was sentenced to 8 1/2 years in prison.
Caira once worked as a research technologist at Northwestern University.
FBI affidavits said an informant — who already had served time in prison for murder — told them in December 2009 that Mann had come to him seeking someone to make the prosecutor and the agent involved in Caira's narcotics case "disappear."
The informant said he "never had any intention of killing anyone" but merely wanted to get either Mann or Caira to hand him a "down payment" of two kilograms of cocaine before "absconding with the down payment," according to court papers.
When the down payment was not forthcoming, the informant had his lawyer contact the FBI and began to tell his story. The two men were arrested as a result of a joint investigation by the FBI and the federal marshals service.
Daily Herald staff contributed to this report.
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