The Gangfighters Network is an organization designed to bridge the gap between academia and the criminal justice professions. For more information, visit and The focus is on gangs, initially adult gangs as it appears they have been ignored or absorbed into the mainstream society. There's a special focus on gang members in the military.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Guardsman stole gear because he was mad about his time in Iraq

June 1, 2007
BY FRANK MAIN Crime Reporter/
An Illinois National Guard soldier told investigators he sold military equipment on the black market because he was upset over his treatment in Iraq -- and it was so easy to steal.
Staff Sgt. Lee N. Shobe pleaded guilty Wednesday to providing a government witness with night-vision devices, a laser sight, M-16 rifle magazines and body armor plates in September. In November, he sold an undercover FBI agent another night-vision device and a stun gun, according to his plea agreement.

When he was arrested in January, he explained "he was selling the equipment because of poor accountability within the military and because he was treated poorly in Iraq," his plea agreement said.

Shobe, of Downstate Toledo, was assigned to the National Guard Armory in Downstate Sullivan. He faces up to 10 years in prison, but the government has recommended a lenient sentence because of his cooperation.

The FBI recorded Shobe telling an informant that a soldier from Chicago smuggled body armor from Iraq and Shobe stole it from the soldier's duffel bag. Shobe is heard agreeing with the informant that Chicago gang members "would love those," according to court documents.

Some law enforcement officials are concerned that gang members serving in the military are supplying criminal associates back home with stolen weapons and equipment.,CST-NWS-gangs01.article

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