BLM rioter sentenced to 5 years in federal prison for throwing explosive device into Chicago restaurant

The Justice Department said Vargas also tried to steal cash from an ATM the previous night and struck the machine with a baseball bat and a metal pole from a street sign.


A Black Lives Matter rioter was sentenced to five years in federal prison last Thursday for throwing an explosive device into a suburban Chicago restaurant in downtown Naperville, Illinois, during the violent summer 2020 riots.

27-year-old Diego Vargas, of Aurora, was convicted of hurling a lit explosive device through the window of Egg Harbor Cafe, resulting in two explosions on June 1, 2020. The restaurant was closed, and no injuries were reported at the time.

Last week, US District Judge Elaine E. Bucklo handed the five-year federal prison sentence on March 3 to Vargas after a hearing in a Chicago federal court.

The sentence was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, and Emmerson Buie, Jr., special agent-in-charge of the Chicago field office of the FBI.  Local authorities including the Naperville Police Department and Aurora Police Department provided assistance.

Chicago Tribune reporter Jason Meisner said federal prosecutors played footage of the Egg Harbor Cafe explosion at Vargas's detention hearing in October 2020.

In the video posted to social media, a man in a red t-shirt and can be seen throwing material set ablaze into the business. As he runs away from the scene, a loud explosion can be heard moments later. "Burn that...!" someone shouts.

Vargas was facing a maximum of 20 years in prison, the Daily Herald reported.

He was also accused of causing up to $10,000 in vandalism damage at several businesses in downtown Naperville the same night the restaurant was attacked.

However, the charges were quashed following Vargas's sentencing in the federal case, according to DuPage County court records, the Daily Herald cited.

In addition to the restaurant vandalism, on the previous night, Vargas tried to steal cash from an ATM in Aurora, according to a Department of Justice press release.

Vargas struck the ATM machine with a baseball bat and a metal pole from a street sign in an unsuccessful attempt to pry it open, the Justice Department reported.


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