Illinois State Trooper charged in connection with alleged scheme to sell stolen military equipment

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CHICAGO — A former Marine and Illinois State Trooper was stripped of police powers over the weekend after he was arrested in connection with an alleged scheme to sell stolen military goods. 

On Friday, 31-year-old Rafael Montalvo of Yorkville was arrested and now faces charges of conspiracy, theft of government property and transporting stolen goods between states, according to the Department of Justice in the Eastern District of North Carolina

Montalvo is a former Marine, member of the Illinois National Guard and was an Illinois State Police trooper after he graduated from the ISP Academy in October 2019.

He previously served at the Marine Corps air base in Cherry Point, North Carolina, and was arrested on suspicion of conspiring with others to steal avionics and electronic testing equipment from Marine aviation squadrons before shipping the stolen goods to buyers in other states, according to prosecutors.

Officials said the scheme is believed to have been going on for the last two-and-a-half years. If convicted, he could spend up to 25 years in prison. 

In a statement, the Illinois State Police said in part:

“Montalvo was stripped of his police powers and placed on leave upon the filing of the criminal charges.  This investigation was headed by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service with the cooperation of the Illinois State Police Division of Internal Investigations.”

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