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Accused of threat to witness, convicted drug dealer exits federal courthouse when judge revokes bond

Posted Nov 15, 2013 2:35 PM CDT
By Martha Neil

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Accused of threatening a witness Sunday, a convicted drug dealer freed on bond pending sentencing showed up at the federal courthouse in Chicago on Tuesday to respond to a prosecution motion asking that he be taken into custody.

But after U.S. District Judge Harry Leinenweber did, in fact, revoke bond for Ignacio Torres, 32, the defendant left the courtroom and has not been seen since, the Chicago Tribune reports. A $3,000 reward is now being offered for information that leads to his capture.

Authorities said both the judge and the prosecutor left the courtroom as Torres was saying goodbye to his family and friends. No U.S. marshals were present at the time.

The government filed another motion on Thursday seeking to forfeit his $200,000 bond, which was secured by a family home.

Torres pleaded guilty in June to cocaine possession with intent to distribute. He is accused by prosecutors of acting with "numerous associates" on Sunday to confront, chase and throw rocks at a cooperating witness in the case, as well as threaten the life of the witness, who escaped and called police. Prosecutors say Torres called the witness a "snitch."

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