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Jury likely to get ’93 murder case on Friday

Mug Michael J. Reyes akLefty born 11/16/72.

Mug of Michael J. Reyes, aka Lefty, born 11/16/72.

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Updated: March 2, 2013 12:06PM

ST. CHARLES — Closing arguments are scheduled to begin Friday in the 1993 murder of two brothers.

Prosecutors and defense attorneys for 40-year-old Michael Reyes rested their respective cases Thursday after testimony that included a former Latin Kings leader and an Aurora police investigator. Prosecutors have said Reyes shot Francisco and Juan Montoya inside their family van in March 1993 as part of drug deal ripoff. Reyes went uncharged until 2007 when he was arrested as part of the large-scale Operation First Degree Burn sweep that targeted gang members. Prosecutors have said Reyes told multiple people over several years that he killed the Montoyas.

Reyes’ defense team from the Kane County Public Defender’s Office has challenged the reliance of the state’s case on former gang members who agreed to testify against Reyes in exchange for deals with local and federal prosecutors. The defense also suggested that the Montoya family was involved with drug dealing, while prosecutors allege Reyes paged the brothers, under the impression they were going out to make a deal, the night they were killed.

Reyes declined to testify when asked by Judge Susan Clancy Boles on Thursday. Jurors are expected to get the case and start deliberations on Friday.

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