June 15, 2021

ATF: Man paid $2K to try to have wife's uncle pushed in front of subway train

A Chicago man is accused of trying to pay a hit man $2,000 at La Mex restaurant in Joliet to have his wife’s uncle pushed in front of a subway train.

About 7 p.m. Oct. 2, 42-year-old Venkatesh Bhogireddy went to the restaurant at 3157 W. Jefferson St. to meet with a man he believed was a hit man, but was in fact an undercover agent with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, according to a federal criminal complaint.

It was Bhogireddy’s fourth meeting with the “hit man,” whom he suspected was an undercover agent, and he handed the agent a “folded wad” of $2,000 in cash in exchange for having his wife’s uncle killed, according to the complaint.

The complaint says Bhogireddy wanted his relative killed because he suspected his uncle-in-law was causing his wife to accuse him of “doing things” to their children, such as masturbating in front of them.

Bhogireddy also believed his wife was having an affair with his uncle, according to the complaint.

After Bhogireddy left the La Mex meeting, ATF agents learned that he was heading to Bolingbrook and contacted police there to have him arrested, according to court records.

He was arrested and booked into the Will County jail Oct. 2, then taken the next day to Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago.

He was released on a $200,000 bond Oct. 8.

Bhogireddy faces federal charges of solicitation of a crime of violence and use of interstate commerce facilities in the commission of murder for hire.

Bhogireddy declined to answer questions about the charges against him, referring them to his attorney, Michael Monico.

“I need to talk to my attorney before I disclose anything to you,” he said.

Monico did not return a call.

Bhogireddy denied he did anything inappropriate with his children and said his wife has mental issues.

The Will County State’s Attorney’s Office also filed a forfeiture complaint against Bhogireddy Tuesday seeking forfeiture of Bhogireddy’s 2008 Infiniti FX35 because he allegedly used it to “facilitate the commission” of attempted murder.

ATF agents developed a case against Bhogireddy after receiving information about him from a confidential informant who was arrested in 2017 by Will County Sheriff’s deputies on charges related to attempted sexual contact with a minor, according to the federal complaint.

Felix Sarver

Felix Sarver covers crime and courts for The Herald-News