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Monday, 30 June 2008

Grenade exploded in south Dublin yesterday morning as gang warfare restarts

A rock was used to smash the front door window of the family home in Drimnagh, before the grenade was thrown into the property.The attack occurred about 20 minutes after the family had gone to bed. They had been watching television until 2am. The grenade was identified as being a lethal Yugoslav fragmentation device, which exploded with such ferocity that shards of metal riddled radiators and walls throughout the house, even reaching as far as the attic.The indentations in the walls were described as "bullet-like".Garda sources said the attack was the latest violent incident in a murderous feud between south Dublin gangs. It followed an attack on another house in Drimnagh last week in which a grandmother was shot and a baby narrowly escaped injury. There was also an attack on the home of two elderly grandparents.Garda sources said it was a miracle the four adults and two children asleep in the property were not seriously injured or killed in yesterday morning's attack.
The intended target --a suspected associate of the leader of one of the warring gangs -- was not at home.A red Fiat Punto, later found burnt out nearby, is being examined by forensics experts to see if it was used in the grenade assault.
Garda sources say innocent relatives, including parents and children of gang members, are now being seen as legitimate targets in the feuding as leaders of the factions and their henchmen protect themselves with tight security.
The south city residential enclaves of Crumlin and Drimnagh have been embroiled in a long-running feud between drugs gangs. One faction, led by drug dealer, Freddie Thompson, is at war with another gang, whose leader is behind bars but still thought to be directing his associates. They have access to guns and ammunitions, such as pipe bombs and grenades, some supplied by former dissident republicans. At least 10 lives have been claimed so far and scores more people have been injured.
Last week's cycle of violence began on Tuesday, when gunmen pulled up at a house in Knocknarea Avenue, in Drimnagh, and fired shots through the front door.
A grandmother in her 50s, who police said was an innocent bystander, was shot in the shoulder as she cradled an eight-month-old infant. She was released from St James Hospital on Friday where she was treated for her injuries. Later that night, in an undisguised act of revenge, gunmen opened fire on an elderly couple's home in The Coombe area at 11.30pm. The house of the couple -- innocent relatives of one of the gang leaders -- was shot at three times.
The next day, another gun attack followed on three suspected gang members who were in a car on Galtymore Road, Drimnagh. The intended targets managed to escape.
Gardai sought to prevent further retaliatory attacks by launching dawn raids on the feuding gangs on Thursday morning. Around 100 detectives conducted 36 searches on homes and apartments used by the gang members and their associates

Patched Mongrel Mob members from Christchurch and one from Dunedin were arrested yesterday

Two patched Mongrel Mob members from Christchurch and one from Dunedin were arrested yesterday, confirming reports that reinforcements from further north had arrived in the city, but police said tensions between the Mob's Invercargill chapter and the Road Knights had eased off after reaching boiling point last week.An Invercargill Mob member was also arrested yesterday and appeared in the Invercargill District Court on charges of possessing an offensive weapon and resisting police, while one of the Christchurch members also appeared on a resisting charge.Police maintained a security vigil around the court as six people believed to be connected to the Road Knights appeared on charges unrelated to the tensions.The side entrance to the court was locked, as it had been each time gang members appeared this week, with every person entering the court searched and scanned by a metal detector.Apart from a single drive-by in Don St by four patched Mob members in a Ford Falcon, and a couple of members outside the court, who told The Southland Times they were "waiting for a bro", there was little sign of the tension in the city during the past week.Detective Senior Sergeant Brian Cowie, of Invercargill CIB, said while the feud had appeared to ease, police were aware it could just be a calm before the storm.
"It's quietening down, but we have to be realistic based on history (between both gangs) and we need to keep a high profile." At least 10 officers from Dunedin had been drafted to help during the weekend, and police would maintain a high profile, he said.However, police did not know what had led to the stoush between the gangs, he said. "There has been no leadup ... there's nothing that we can see, but they don't just go and burn down a pad without there being something." Despite suggestions of gang members en route to Invercargill, including a report of 30 boarding an inter-island ferry in Wellington on Tuesday, police had yet to see any gang members in the south from north of Christchurch, Mr Cowie said.Southland area commander Inspector Tony O'Neill said police had brought in extra staff to boost resources after the fires and would maintain that presence in a bid to "take the heat out of the situation".A feud between the gang factions was sparked last week after the Road Knights' Balmoral Dr headquarters was razed. Two motorbikes belonging to the gang were allegedly stolen by senior Mongrel Mob members and later torched.
Several days later a property in front of the Mongrel Mob headquarters in Severn St was burned down last Saturday night in what police dubbed a possible "revenge attack". However, the property owner said this week the only link with the Invercargill gang was the location of the house.

Saturday, 28 June 2008

Francesco Lenti sentenced to six years in penitentiary for shooting dead a member of the West Toronto Hell Angel

Outlaw biker Francesco Lenti showed little emotion today as a judge sentenced him to six years in penitentiary for shooting dead a member of the West Toronto Hells Angels in a Vaughan strip club.Lenti, 61, who goes by the nicknames Frank and Cisco, nodded and waved his handcuffed hands to a half dozen family members in Newmarket Court today before he was led away after hearing the sentence handed down by Mr. Justice Michael Brown.The judge noted that Lenti opened fire on four bikers connected with the Hells Angels early in the morning of Dec. 2, 2006, after he heard from police that the club had taken out a murder contract on his life.Court heard Lenti was targeted for murder because he spurned a membership offer and instead tried to revive the rival Bandidos gang."It (shooting) did involve a measure of provocation," the judge told court.The judge noted that Lenti turned himself in to police and pleaded guilty to manslaughter and two counts of aggravated assault.
However, Brown added that the courts must strongly denounce the use of guns in public places. "The use of guns to settle disputes is a scourge in our community," the judge said.No members of the Hells Angels were present in the courtroom, guarded by members of the York Regional Police paramilitary tactical unit.David (Dred) Buchanan was fatally shot in the lobby of the strip club, while Dana (Boomer) Carnegie and Carlo Verrilli were seriously wounded.
Court heard that Buchanan held the senior position of sergeant at arms of the West Toronto Hells Angels, meaning he was in charge of enforcing club discipline.
Court also heard that Verrilli was promoted to full membership in the Hells Angels within a week of the shooting.The judge noted that a surveillance video inside the club captured Buchanan and other Hells Angels aggressively confronting Lenti in the lobby of the club, where he was in charge of security.
"Mr. Buchanan was yelling and swearing at Mr. Lenti," Brown said. "... Mr. Lenti appeared to be trying to calm the situation down."Brown said that the original sentence for the shooting was 10 years, but he deducted four years for time already served in jail.Lenti has already served 19 months in custody. Prisoners routinely receive two days credit for every day spent in pre-trial custody, but the judge said that he was giving Lenti enhanced credit because he served his jail time in a segregation cell, away from other prisoners.Court earlier heard that Lenti was segregated from other inmates in Lindsay jail because of concerns that a prisoner with ties to the Hells Angels might try to carry out the murder contract.Two Hells Angels were in custody in Lindsay on charges of conspiracy to murder Lenti at the same time that Lenti was in the same jail, awaiting trial.Mark Cephes Stephenson of the Hells Angels' Oshawa chapter remains in custody in the Lindsay jail, awaiting trial for the alleged murder conspiracy plot.
Remond Akleh of the elite Hells Angels Nomads chapter, was also locked up in Lindsay on the murder conspiracy charges, but has since been freed on bail.It took Lenti just six seconds to fire seven shots in the confrontation, the judge noted.
Lenti's pistol has never been recovered.

Robert J. Shannon,allegedly oversaw the smuggling and distribution of narcotics for the Hell’s Angels

Federal prosecutors have charged two Canadian men who allegedly ran a drug smuggling ring for the Hell’s Angels Motorcycle Club that involved stuffing hollowed out logs, cargo containers and propane tankers with cocaine and marijuana.
Robert J. Shannon, 38, of Maple Ridge, British Columbia, and Devron D. Quast, 38, of Abbotsford, British Columbia, were arrested in early June after meeting with an undercover federal agent. The pair traveled to the U.S. to discuss a deal with the agent, who posed as a drug trafficker.Law enforcement agents spent three years investigating the operation and have seized more than 1,300 pounds of cocaine, 7,000 pounds of “B.C. Bud” marijuana, and $3.5 million in cash. Thirty-eight people have been charged with drug trafficking and related offenses in the case.
According to court documents, Shannon allegedly oversaw the smuggling and distribution of narcotics for the Hell’s Angels, including transporting drugs inside false walls of cargo containers, in loads of commercial lumber, and in large PVC pipes hidden inside a propane tanker.
Quast was allegedly responsible for the transportation of the drugs, even guaranteeing to Canadian marijuana suppliers that drugs would be smuggled successfully into the U.S. He agreed to pay the suppliers $425 per pound of marijuana if any load was seized by law enforcement or lost, according to court documents.If convicted, Shannon and Quast face up to life in prison, based on the amount of illegal drugs involved in the case.
In addition, federal agents arrested Richard Jansen of Chilliwack, British Columbia, for his alleged role in transporting the drugs. Jansen is the owner of Scorpion Transport Services.

Accused 26 alleged members of the Hispanic gang Mara Salvatrucha, or MS-13, of crimes ranging from murder to drug activity.

Twenty-six alleged members of a street gang said to be among the deadliest in the United States faced arrest after indictments were returned against them.
Prosecutors said the indictments were returned by a grand jury in Charlotte, N.C., and accuse 26 alleged members of the Hispanic gang Mara Salvatrucha, or MS-13, of crimes ranging from murder to drug activity.
Law enforcement officials say MS-13 is based in Charlotte and has up to 50,000 members worldwide, about 10,000 of whom are believed to be active in at least 38 U.S. states and is so big that 2004 the FBI created a task force that focuses specifically on it.An official report on the gang said members smuggle illicit drugs, primarily powder cocaine and marijuana, into the United States and distribute the drugs throughout the country, with some gang members also involved in alien smuggling, assault, drive-by shooting, homicide, identification theft, prostitution operations, robbery and weapons trafficking.The 26 were charged under the federal Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organizations Act and authorities began executing the arrest warrants Tuesday, CNN reported. Four North Carolina slayings were included in the indictments.

Saturday, 21 June 2008

Julius Robinson targeted by members of the Omaha Mafia Bloods.

Julius Robinson's friends say Robinson was targeted by members of the Omaha Mafia Bloods, a group of largely young white men from Millard that Omaha police consider to be a street gang.
18-year-old Robinson was shot to death Sunday night along a tree-lined Millard street."His dad brought him out here to prevent this from happening," said friend Dan Kuhr, a former Millard South classmate and teammate of Robinson's.
Authorities have issued a warrant for the arrest of 18-year-old Daniel C. Miller, a graduate of Millard's alternative school, accusing Miller of first-degree murder in Robinson's slaying.Police say they are not yet ready to say whether the killing of Robinson was gang-related. But they say they are aware of Omaha Mafia Bloods members in and around Millard and say the group does fit the definition of a criminal gang.
"OMB in Millard? Yes, we do have enough information to consider them a gang in Omaha," said Lt. Richie Gonzalez of the Omaha police gang unit.
And regardless of whether the shooting of Robinson outside a suburban apartment complex was gang-related, the killing does make it clear that youth violence in Omaha is not limited to north and south Omaha.Dave Gehrls, an ordained minister who has been leading prayer vigils at the sites of Omaha shootings, held two such vigils Tuesday night. One was at 40th and Spencer Streets, marking the latest shooting death in north Omaha. The other was in Millard just south of 128th and Q, where Robinson fell."I don't know what happened here," said Gehrls, director of Omaha ministry for Christ for the City International. "We just know violence is spreading in our city, and we have to address the issue."Though many of Robinson's friends dispute the notion that the shooting was related to gang activity, they make it clear it did stem from a rivalry between two groups of Millard-area youths.
Robinson's friends say they know the identities of four youths they say were in the car from which Robinson was shot, including the one they say wielded the gun.

Robert Elliott was with Robinson and another man Sunday night at 128th and Deauville Drive when they came face to face with the occupants of a tan Chrysler Sebring.
"We were here walking out to the road. All I saw was a gun come out, it was on the windshield and I heard the first pop," Elliott said.
He said he pushed Robinson to the ground behind the sign for the Oak Ridge Apartments and heard two more shots. The car drove away, and Elliott quickly realized Robinson had been shot in the chest. Elliott watched Robinson's eyes roll back, and Robinson later was pronounced dead.While some of Robinson's friends refer to OMB as a gang, others dispute the notion. They say it isn't a criminal enterprise, just a group of Millard gang wannabes with nothing to do.
"They don't do anything but sit around a house all day," one of Robinson's friends said.Friends also give conflicting accounts of whether Robinson himself was in a gang. His girlfriend termed the group of mostly white, former Millard South students with whom Robinson hung around a gang, but she said it was more just a close-knit group of friends."His gang was a family," said Michelle Rayborn, who said she had been dating Robinson for more than a month.While some Robinson associates have suggested Robinson once had been a member of OMB, Elliott disputed that, saying Robinson never had been and had rebuffed the group. Members of Robinson's family, who live about a mile from the shooting scene, have publicly disputed the notion he was a gang member.
Regardless, Robinson's friends say there was a running feud between Robinson and members of the OMB, many of whom also had attended Millard South. (Miller had attended Millard West before graduating from the Millard Learning Center.)
Robinson had made his feelings about the rival group clear, putting up on his personal MySpace page, "F - - - OMB." The friends say a member of the rival group posted a threat on the Web page in response.
Gonzalez stressed that Omaha police cannot say until they complete their investigation and make arrests whether OMB members were behind the shooting.But those OMB initials aren't new to police.
Gonzalez said they know of OMB members who have committed crimes in and outside Millard — one of the criteria to be considered a gang. OMB graffiti also has been found spray-painted around Millard.
Police think OMB also draws members from other parts of the city, including northwest Omaha. He said police have been working with school resource officers in Millard to educate school officials about the gang.
Millard school officials are aware of the Omaha Mafia Bloods and are watchful for gang activity in general, said Kraig Lofquist, the district's director of pupil services.
Lofquist said security staff and administrators from Millard's middle and high schools have attended presentations by the Omaha police gang unit. School resource officers assigned to the district have shared information with their schools, he said.
"I don't think we have a gang problem," he said. "But to be really honest with you, from time to time we have gang members in our schools."Situations involving gang members, Lofquist said, rarely happen on school grounds.But just this month, the Millard school board specifically prohibited gangs, their apparel and hand signals in the district's student code of conduct.
"The more proactive you are, the better off you are," Lofquist said.
During and after the Millard prayer vigil on Tuesday night, Robinson's friends tearfully shared memories of him.
Kuhr said he first met Robinson in seventh grade, when they were wrestlers for rival Millard middle schools. Kuhr later ran into Robinson and his father fishing at Chalco Hills, and they became fast friends.
Kuhr said Robinson had an outgoing personality that would light up a room, and he was a standout athlete in both wrestling and football.
Robinson was a running back and linebacker on the Millard South team last fall and had a key fumble recovery in the Patriots' win over rival Millard North. But he did not finish the season with the team, apparently for disciplinary reasons.
Kuhr says "some old stuff came back to get" Robinson.
In April, police cited Robinson on suspicion of disorderly conduct at the school over an incident in which he was accused of twice shoving a classmate to the floor. The case was set for trial next month.
Kuhr said both he and Robinson, who didn't graduate with his class this spring, were planning to finish their degrees at Millard's alternative school beginning this fall.
"He was determined to be the first person in his family to go to college," Kuhr said.
Instead, Robinson's friends are now planning for his funeral and angrily awaiting an arrest.After many of the youths had left the prayer vigil, J.D. Elliott, the father of the young man who had witnessed the killing, gave his own thoughts on what is going on in Millard. Does he think there's a gang problem there?
"Seriously, yeah," the contract truck driver said. "They're not part of national gangs, but they've got their own goings on. It makes me mad."

The gun was used to shoot a 31-year-old Bikie in the leg while he was standing outside the tattoo parlour in George Street, Windsor

Heavily-armed police swooped on a house in Scarvell Avenue, McGraths Hill, at about 5.20pm (AEST) yesterday and arrested the 33-year-old man.
Investigators also seized several items including a .22 calibre handgun during a raid on a house in Chaucer Road, Riverstone, earlier in the day.
Police say it will be alleged the gun was used to shoot a 31-year-old man in the leg while he was standing outside the tattoo parlour in George Street, Windsor, on Monday night.The victim is also allegedly a member of the same outlaw motorcycle gang.The 33-year-old man has been charged with wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, possessing a shortened firearm without a permit and firing a gun in a manner likely to injure.He's been refused bail and will appear at Parramatta Local Court later today.The arrest was the culmination of an investigation by Windsor detectives and the State Crime Commands Gangs Squad who combined to form Strike Force Tracksuit.Detective Inspector Steve Blackmore from Hawkesbury Local Area Command said the arrest was an outstanding result, given it was achieved in an environment where all parties were reluctant to assist police.
This sends a clear message to all outlaw motorcycle groups that they are not above the law and police will always strongly pursue all criminal matters, he said.

5th Street Bulldog Gang Members conspiracy to commit murder and participation in a criminal street gang

Fresno Police are now investigating the city's 20th murder of the year, after the victim succumbed to his injuries on Friday. Police say 26-year-old Francisco Solano of Fresno was shot back on June 18th, near the 3400 Block of E. Woodward. Solano was rushed to Community Regional Medical Center for treatment, where he succumbed to his injuries on June 20th.
Three arrests have already been made in the case. Police have arrested 19-year-old Joshua Martinez, 18-year-old Eric Almarez and 22-year-old Rocky Gonzales. All of the men were booked in the Fresno County Jail where they have been charged with attempted murder (which will now be changed to murder), conspiracy to commit murder and participation in a criminal street gang. A 17-year-old juvenile was also arrested; he was booked into the Fresno County Juvenile Hall on the same charges as the other men. Police say all of the men are validated 5th Street Bulldog Gang Members.

The leader of Oregon's Mongols Motorcycle Club Justin "Mooch" DeLoretto guilty of reckless driving

The leader of Oregon's Mongols Motorcycle Club intends to fight a prosecutor's plan to stop him from associating with his own members. A Lane County jury on Thursday found Justin "Mooch" DeLoretto guilty of reckless driving and other misdemeanor charges in an April 23 incident in which he was accused of trying to run two biker-gang investigators off Interstate 5 during rush hour. The jury acquitted DeLoretto of eight felony charges, including conspiracy to commit second-degree kidnapping.
At his sentencing, set for Monday, prosecutors will seek jail time for DeLoretto and then a term of probation. That would include a "no association" order barring him from contact with the Mongols. DeLoretto, who turns 27 on Sunday and has "Mongols" tattooed on the back of his head, set up Oregon's chapters of the club.
A no-association order for the charismatic leader would be a "huge blow" to Oregon's Mongols, said Eugene police Detective Dave Burroughs, one of the investigators DeLoretto was accused of trying to run off the road. "This guy's the brains of the Mongols," he said. "He's extremely smart. He's a good leader."
DeLoretto's lawyer, Kelly Beckley, said he would fight to protect his client's right to free association. "The state's attempt to vilify everybody associated with the Oregon Mongols, and to make them sound like some sort of a vicious outlaw motorcycle gang, is just wrong," he said. It was DeLoretto's intelligence, polite demeanor and compelling testimony that helped persuade the jury to acquit him of the felony counts that could have put him in prison for years, Beckley said. DeLoretto testified that on April 23 he followed two men in a Ford Explorer that turned onto his driveway in rural Turner. He said he did not realize -- until police later stopped him -- that Special Agent Jimmy Packard of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was behind the wheel, with Burroughs as his passenger. The two investigators testified they had driven to Turner to identify DeLoretto's home because he was a suspect in an assault at a downtown Eugene music club. DeLoretto testified he did not know who was in the Explorer. But he acknowledged being hypervigilant about unwelcome visitors because a story had appeared three days earlier in The Sunday Oregonian pointing out a potential turf dispute between the Mongols and the Gypsy Joker Motorcycle Club. The Mongols' leader, driving a pickup, followed the investigators' Explorer into Salem, where it stopped briefly outside a house that once served as the Gypsy Joker clubhouse. DeLoretto then followed the SUV down I-5, phoning other Mongols and their associates to join him. DeLoretto, who tailgated the Explorer, was soon joined by compatriots in other vehicles, two of whom flanked both sides of Packard's government SUV. The confrontation escalated when a 24-year-old Mongols "hangaround" named Matthew A. Weiss swerved his pickup in front of the Explorer.
Packard veered out of Weiss' way, hit his siren and activated his emergency lights. A swarm of Eugene police cruisers soon arrived. Weiss later pleaded guilty to coercion and drew a 30-day jail term. A prospective Mongols member, 22-year-old Nathan A. Cassidy, drew 90 days for reckless driving and unlawful use of a weapon -- his vehicle. Both were forbidden from associating with the Mongols.
Police describe the California-based Mongols, with chapters scattered across North America, as one of the nation's most violent outlaw motorcycle gangs. The Mongols have fought a bloody turf war with the rival Hells Angels since the 1970s, an enmity that erupted in a 2002 riot at a Laughlin, Nev., casino. The melee left two Angels and a Mongol dead.
DeLoretto's twin brother, Jeremy, is filling in as acting president of the Mongols' Oregon chapters. He said his brother's trial seemed less about his actions than his association with the Mongols.
"If this was a regular citizen and not a Mongol," he said, "none of these charges would have stuck."

17 from 'Gang 77' and four who called themselves 'Rempit Town'.

Mat Rempit gangs are often likened to sharks in a feeding frenzy, in that they tend to circle and terrorise their victims before pouncing on them. But 21 Mat Rempit in the Klang Valley recently met their match when they were caught in a police dragnet.
Sentul police chief Assistant Commissioner Ahmad Sofian Md Yassin said the suspects, all in their 20s, are believed to be involved in more than 30 cases of robbery in the Klang Valley, since the beginning of this year.
"The suspects comprise men from two groups - 17 from 'Gang 77' and four who called themselves 'Rempit Town'.
"All of them were picked up between May 29 and June 11 in various areas around the Klang Valley."And although they are from two different groups, their modus operandi was similar," Ahmad Sofian told a press conference yesterday.
Describing their tactics, he said the suspects would tail potential victims, usually lone drivers in the middle of the night or early in the morning. When the victims' vehicle stops, the men would surround it with their 'kapchai' motorcycles.
"The men use their helmets to smash their victims' window, before robbing them of their valuables.
"The money they get from the robberies are usually used to modify their motorcycles, which will then be used for illegal racing."
"Rempit Town" members are believed to be involved in four robberies, while 'Gang 77' members have struck about 30 times. The suspects are mostly from Gombak, while several are from Selayang, Petaling Jaya and Seremban.
"Police are checking with their counterparts in other districts and Selangor to see if the suspects are involved in any similar cases."He said police also seized 26 handphones and two gold chains, worth about RM20,000 and 11 motorcycles.

Franklin Field Boyz,10 individuals on crack cocaine distribution charges

Federal, state, and Boston law enforcement officials announced last night the arrests of 10 individuals on crack cocaine distribution charges, as part of an ongoing effort to temper street violence.Many of those arrested are involved in one of the city's most persistent and violent gangs, the Franklin Field Boyz, officials said. The gang's drug dealing and gun activity at the Franklin Field Housing Development in Mattapan have caused many of the 1,000 residents there to live in a state of fear, officials said."These are good, decent people who live in this neighborhood, and they should feel safe whenever they walk out their door," US Attorney Michael J. Sullivan said during a press conference at the development's community center.Nearly all of those arrested were charged with distributing cocaine within 1,000 feet of a public housing development, a charge that carries a 40-year maximum sentence in federal prison. The families of some of the individuals, who reside at the Franklin Field development, could also face eviction.
Three other individuals tied to the activity remain at large.Boston Police Commissioner Edward F. Davis said he hoped the arrests would put a dent in the gang's operation. "The message we are sending is, if you pick up a gun, we will get you," Davis said.The arrests top off an eight-month investigation. Drug dealing has been so rampant at the development that undercover agents could obtain a bag of cocaine on nearly any night, according to a federal court affidavit.
Charged in federal indictments with distributing crack cocaine within 1,000 feet of a public housing project were Kenyon Farnum Cohen, 18, of Dorchester; Antwaun Mair, 19, of Boston; Charles McGhee, 45, of Manchester, N.H.; Antowin Fields, 28, of Dorchester; Eric Stoner, 19, of Boston; Devin Mair, 21, of Boston; Hassan Goodman, 19, of Mattapan; Kewon Alexander, 26, of Dorchester; and Kion Johnson of Dorchester.
Mark Shawn Johnson, 34, of Dorchester faces a federal charge of distributing more than 5 grams of crack cocaine.
In addition, the Suffolk district attorney's office announced indictments on charges of distributing drugs in a school zone for Dennis Jones, 21, of Dorchester and Dedrick Cole, 30, of Roxbury. The district attorney also charged Arkie Swinson, 28, of Dorchester with trafficking cocaine and trafficking cocaine in a school zone.
McGhee, Fields, and Kion Johnson remained fugitives last night

Friday, 20 June 2008

Francesco Schiavone head of the Casalesi crime family thought to have carried out more than 1,000 hits in the past 30 years sentenced

Casalesi crime family, which takes its name from the town of Casal di Principe near Naples, has been described as the successor of the Corleone family, which ruled Sicily in the 1980s. The bloodthirsty family is thought to have carried out more than 1,000 hits in the past 30 years to establish an iron grip on the area between Naples and Salerno. However, Francesco Schiavone, the head of the clan, will now spend the rest of his life in prison after being successfully convicted.
Schiavone is nicknamed Sandokan after a popular 1970s television series starring Kabir Bedi. The ten-year Spartacus Trial, named in recognition of the need to fight a revolution in the Casalesi's territory, charged 36 members of the syndicate with a string of murders and other crimes. Sixteen of them will never be released.
"This is the most important trial in the last 20 years," said Roberto Saviano, a best-selling author whose book about the clan, Gomorra, has recently been turned into a prize-winning movie. Mr Saviano, who is under police protection, pointed out that more than 500 witnesses had testified in the trial and that it had meted out the heaviest set of penalties ever for organized crime, a total of some 700 years of prison time. Francesco Bidognetti, known as 'Cicciott' 'e Mezzanotte' (Midnight Fatty), was also given life imprisonment. Michele Zagaria and Antonio Iovine, two other godfathers, got the same sentence but are currently on the run.
Over the course of the initial trial and the appeal, five people involved in the case were murdered by the clan, including an interpreter. A judge and two journalists were threatened with death during the hearings. Raffaello Magi, the presiding judge, said: "Unlike the Neapolitan gangsters who live off cocaine dealing or extortion, the Casalesi exploit every area of economic potential. They do the dumping of the toxic refuse, they hold the monopoly on the cement market, they control the distribution of essential products. They control elections and they offer protection and market opportunities to businesses."
Any business wanting to open in the area controlled by the clan had to pay them for permission and then buy cement off them to build their buildings. The clan is believed to have built parts of the motorway between Rome and Naples and even the prison at Santa Maria Capua Vetere in which many of its members are now held.
In 1996 and 1997, some £400 million was confiscated from the Casalesi. "This is a sum that would have put any normal company on its knees. But Schiavone continued to prosper. The investigators in Naples estimated a total wealth of around £20 billion," said Mr Saviano. The Casalesi became so bold that some of its members used to hold meetings in the local police station at San Cipriano d'Aversa. Investigators found the clan had used the station telephone and even snorted cocaine off a policeman's desk. The clan stepped up its killing in the run-up to the final verdict, culminating in the assassination of Michele Orsi, a businessman working in waste disposal with the Casalesi. Orsi, 47 was summoned to a cafe in the main piazza at Casale di Principe on June 2 and gunned down in a hail of 18 bullets.
Just two days beforehand, a 25-year-old woman whose aunt had turned state witness was fired on but not killed. The relatives of two other businessmen cooperating with the authorities had already been eliminated. Schiavone's brother, Walter, was so enamoured of Tony Montana, the fictional Cuban drug dealer in the 1983 film Scarface, that he recreated a replica of his villa, complete with the curved double staircase from which Montana takes his death dive. Far from meeting a glorious end, however, Schiavone was arrested in 1999 while trying to jump over his garden wall and his villa has now been turned into a physiotherapy centre for disabled people.

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

INLA boss Declan Duffy and Fred Thompson feud 100 gangland criminals in Dublin have been told by gardai that their lives are under serious threat

100 criminals in Dublin have been told by gardai that their lives are under serious threat.Garda Headquarters has advised officers to tell the criminals they are likely to be shot. It’s an extraordinary state of affairs linked to vicious feuding between gangs in the city. Indeed the 100 criminals reffered to here are only in one part of the city - the south inner city - and one feud in particular. The 100 does not take account of criminals warned about threats to their lives in other parts of the capital.
The threats mostly arise from the ongoing feud between INLA boss Declan Duffy and drugs trafficker Fat ‘Freddie’ Thompson. Detectives believe a consortium of criminals have raised €40,000 to have Thompson eliminated. Officers also suspect that a gun and motorbike are in storage for the hit.
In an incident yesterday afternoon, gardai were called to a popular bar in south central Dublin and told two masked men had been searching for Thompson. "They were seen acting suspiciously in a white vehicle, both were wearing balaclavas. Then one got out and went into the pub," said a source today. "He simply asked, 'where's Freddie?'," the source said. In the meantime, gardai have also thwarted two attempts to get an AK47 into the city for an assassination attempt on Freddie Thompson.
Gang members linked to both Thompson and Duffy have been told to take precautions because their lives are under threat. Most are living in the Crumlin/Drimnagh areas or Tallaght. "More than 100 different people have been advised that garda intelligence has deemed that they may be shot. They have been told that criminal elements are going to have them shot," said one senior officer today. Of the 100, most are linked in one way or another to the Duffy/Thompson feud.
Others are linked to the ongoing Crumlin/Drimnagh feud, which also involves Thompson. Ten people have already been murdered as part of that feud.

The Garda Special Branch and Organised Crime Unit, both based at Harcourt Square are on a state of high alert over the feuds. Intelligence has shown that €20,000 has already been raised for the attempt on Thompson's life, with a further €20,000 to be paid over if it is successful. Detectives are also investigating reports that an armed and masked man walked into a south city centre pub yesterday looking for Thompson. Thompson is already the subject of threat from a rival south city gang unlinked to the feud with Duffy. Thompson is said to have poured two pints of lager over the brother of the leader of the other gang in an incident in a Temple Bar nightclub earlier this month. On the other side in recent times, Duffy's home has been shot up two times. two weeks ago that an attempt was made to run him down two weeks ago. The driver of an Alfa Romeo car mounted the footpath in a bid to mow down Duffy close to his home in the south inner city. He only managed to save his life when he cowered in a doorway. Duffy is the leader of the INLA in the capital and also runs a security company. He has fallen foul of a number of criminal gangs in the capital, particularly the outfit run by drugs trafficking suspect 'Fat Freddie' Thompson. Detectives believe either Thompson's gang or a group of criminals based in the south inner city were behind a shooting at Duffy's mother's house more than two weeks ago.

Wayne "Chiller" McGrath died last week

GYPSY Jokers outlaw motorcycle gang members from across Australia and overseas are converging on Adelaide for the funeral of the SA president tomorrow.Wayne "Chiller" McGrath died last week of natural causes.Hundreds of interstate Gypsy Joker members are expected in Adelaide from today. Motorbikes are being loaded on trains in Perth to cross the Nullabor in time for the funeral.Death notices have been placed in The Advertiser by bikies from Gypsy Joker chapters in the US, Germany, Norway and South Africa, as well as WA, NSW, Victoria and Adelaide.The funeral service will be conducted at the Harrison Funeral Chapel, Golden Grove Rd, Ridgehaven, at 1pm.
Later, the funeral cortege will travel to Smithfield Memorial Park Cemetery, Evanston Park, for burial.

Vabeesan Sivarajah, Aziz Miah, , Asif Kumbay, Kirush Nathankumar, were all convicted of murder

Four Tamil gang members were convicted for the murder of another Tamil youth by stabbing him 31 times on a London .They will be sentenced July 7.
The police said gangs of violent Sri Lankan Tamil men in South London area, where illegal fund raising activities of the liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) are quite rampant are "constantly tooled up" and "ready to go", for such crimes .
“There have been a number of violent clashes involving groups of Tamil men in Croydon and other parts of south London in recent years”, said a local newspaper Wandsworth Borough News.
“They culminated in the murder of 28-year-old Prabaskaran Kannan in Tooting last year. He was chased by a group of four men from Croydon who stabbed and slashed their terrified victim 31 times outside a fried chicken takeaway shop”, the newspaper reported. The casecame to be known as Chicken Cottage Tamil murder after the name of the take away restaurant.
The chief detective in the case said Croydon's Tamil gangs were causing concern among officers.
Detective Sergeant Mick Snowdon spoke out about the problems surrounding Tamil gangs after five men were convicted of Mr Kannan's murder at the Old Bailey in London.
Witnesses said in the courts that Mr Kannan was heard shouting "It wasn't me, it wasn't me" shortly before he was brutally set upon and killed by the four Tamil gang members.
Last week, homeless Vabeesan Sivarajah, 22, Aziz Miah, 20, of Sumner Road, Croydon, Asif Kumbay, 20, of Grasmere Road, Purley, and Kirush Nathankumar, 18, of Purley Way, Croydon, were all convicted of murder by an Old Bailey jury. They all denied the charges.
“The young men burst into tears after the sentence was announced. A jury of nine men and three women took three days to reach their verdict”, reported the local newspaper.
“The four were also convicted of causing grievous bodily harm and actual bodily harm to two gang members who were with Mr Kannan that night.
“Another defendant, Mayuran Srivinayagam of Greyhound Terrace, Streatham, was cleared of murder and manslaughter but found guilty of assault.
“Earlier in the trial a sixth gang member, Mahitharn Ratnasingham, of Lesley Grove, Croydon, was cleared of murder and manslaughter. He admitted assault. The men are due to be sentenced on July 7.
“After the men were convicted Det Sgt Snowdon told the Croydon Guardian: "They the gangs are very violent. They are constantly tooled up and ready to go. It is almost like the level of violence is ad hoc. Whatever happens for them happens, and it depends on what weapons they have around."
Quoting a businessman who runs a shop in Croydon the newspaper said Sri Lankan Tamil gangs controlled most of the crime and had the town centre on "lockdown."
Police have always in the past denied there was a problem with the gangs in Croydon, but have now admitted there was a specialist officer dealing with Tamil gang activity in the borough.
A member of a gang who did not want to be named said: "These guys are tough man, they do not care who they hurt or who gets in their way. They ride around in flash cars tooled-up with knives, swords, bats and whatever else they can grab to do damage to a guy."

Notorious has become the security muscle for Kings Cross

the gang Notorious has become the security muscle for a Kings Cross identity.
The gang is the first known in Sydney to follow an international trend of being outlaw "bikies without bikes".While its dozens of city-based members wear full bikie colours, only a few members ride motorcycles.Its members range from seasoned, senior former members of the now-defunct Nomads outlaw motorcycle gang's Parramatta chapter to newly-recruited teenagers as young as 14.They are largely from Sydney's western suburbs and of Middle Eastern and Pacific Islander background.The gang is believed to be focused on criminal activities and have links to the security industry.
It is feared they are acting as unofficial security to Kings Cross nightclubs linked to one person in particular.Late last month, police from the Middle Eastern organised crime squad targeted Notorious in an operation on the nightclub strip.
They arrested two alleged members of Notorious - one an 18-year-old Guildford man arrested with ecstasy tablets at a nightclub.Court documents show he was charged with two counts of supplying a prohibited drug and two of possessing a prohibited drug.He was refused bail and is to appear at Central Local Court on June 30.
Another, a 14-year-old from Guildford, was arrested in the same police operation while he was in a car illegally parked in the CBD. A search found more ecstasy tablets and the boy was charged with drugs supply and possession.Police are also investigating suspected links between Notorious and a 30-year-old Kellyville man arrested last week in an alleyway behind a Surry Hills nightclub.The man, recently released from prison, allegedly had a home-made machine gun and an ammunition magazine containing 32 bullets concealed in a bag. The man was charged with being armed with intent to commit an indictable offence, possessing a firearm and other firearm-related offences.Notorious was also believed linked to an assault at an Eastern Suburbs pub last year.It is speculated that Notorious came into being following a series of attacks targeting a nightclub owner ear last year, coinciding with the firebombing of the Parramatta chapter's Granville clubhouse.Rival outlaw bikie gang the Comancheros was suspected of being behind the firebombing.In March 2007, masked gunmen burst into a nightclub, firing shots into the ceiling and smashing up the bar. The nightclub owner's bodyguard was allegedly injured during the incident.It is feared the Comancheros have been trying to wrestle control of the nightclub strip and conflict with Notorious may be on the agenda.

Ramon Alejandre Jr described as a "hard-core, veteran Sureno." on trail

Contra Costa prosecutor Monday asked jurors to convict a West County gang member of first-degree murder in the death of a 15-year-old San Pablo boy gunned down last year because he was wearing a rival's color.
The case against Ramon Alejandre Jr., 31, hinges on testimony by two junior gang members who were in a truck with the defendant when they saw De Anza High School freshman Ivan Santos walking home on 11th Street on Feb. 2, 2007, after buying a soda at a neighborhood store.
Believing Santos' red pajama pants signified he was in a rival gang, Alejandre got out of the truck and walked toward the boy, firing a .45 caliber semiautomatic handgun, deputy district attorney Aron DeFerrari said. Santos, whose parents told the Times last year was not a gang member, was hit nine times and died on the sidewalk.The two other people in the truck, Roberto Garcia, Alejandre's 22-year-old nephew, and Juan Vargas, 19, pleaded no contest to being accessories after the fact and were sentenced to one year behind bars. They both testified at Alejandre's trial that they heard shots before Alejandre returned to the truck.In his closing statements at Alejandre's trial, defense attorney Paul Feuerwerker said Garcia and Vargas have a motive to blame Alejandre but there is no evidence outside their testimony that Alejandre was the gunman.
"I think if you use your common sense I think you'll see that Mr. Garcia and Mr. Vargas lied," said Feuerwerker, pointing to inconsistencies in the witnesses' stories about what happened before and after the shooting.
"The fact that Mr. Alejandre is a gang member is irrelevant to the question of whether he is responsible for this crime," Feuerwerker said.
DeFerrari said Garcia and Vargas have put their lives at risk by testifying against Alejandre, whom he described as a "hard-core, veteran Sureno." Their account of what happened is corroborated by the position of the shell casings found at the shooting scene, and police found a gun later determined to be the murder weapon under Alejandro's seat when officers pulled the truck over later that night.
"The defendant walked down the sidewalk and shot (Santos) over and over and over again," DeFerrari said. "Then he stood above him and shot him some more."
After closing statements, the jury began deliberating late Monday and will resume today in the courtroom of Judge John Kennedy.

The President of the Life and Death bikie gang, was shot in the leg at the The Naked Gun 2 Studio on George Street in Windsor

31-year-old man, reportedly a member of the Life and Death bikie gang, was shot in the leg at the The Naked Gun 2 Studio on George Street in Windsor about 5.45pm yesterday.He was taken to Nepean District Hospital in a satisfactory condition, police say.The man was reportedly under police guard last night.A worker in Windsor, who did not wish to be named, said she and a male companion were walking to her car down a laneway near the parlour when she heard yelling followed by a gunshot.
"I heard some arguing and then a gunshot and I took off," she said."There was a lot of screaming and yelling and I took off up the hill. I wasn't going there," she said.
The woman said she saw someone "skinny with a bikie vest on" walking to a motorcycle after a single shot rang out. She could not identify any gang colours on the vest.
"When I went to the car I saw someone and I saw he had a gun. It was dark, I just saw a gun silhouette," she said."He looked at us and I was terrified. I thought he was going to shoot me."The woman said she drove off and called police but was yet to be interviewed by officers.She said it was well known around town that it was a Life and Death bikie who had been shot."That bikie gang is renowned and associated with that shop I believe," she said.Some workers in the area did not want to talk about the shooting but a woman who works close by said she emerged from her shop last night to see a crime scene on George Street."We were quite surprised when we walked out last night and saw all the police," she said."I saw crime tape and I thought, 'This is really bad, someone's been hurt.' "Despite the wounding, the woman said she was not intimidated by the Life and Death gang."They are a bunch of pussies," she said. "They are not like your Hells Angels or your Comancheros. They are just would-be bikies. They don't frighten me, put it that way."Police were reluctant to discuss the gang connection to the crime today or comment on reports that the injured man was the president of the Life and Death outfit.
Windsor police Detective Inspector Brett McFadden confirmed the shooting but said "I'm not going anywhere near that" when asked if the man was a member of the gang.A State Crime Command spokeswoman said: "I understand that the gangs squad is providing assistance to local police."A NSW Ambulance spokeswoman said paramedics treated the man for entry and exit gunshot wounds to his leg before transferring him to Nepean District Hospital.
In March, police were called to a Newcastle street to break up a brawl between three Life and Death members and 10 bikies from the larger Rebels gang over a turf dispute.Knives, an extendable baton, a broken pool cue and pieces of timber were used in the fight and two Life and Death members were charged with affray, possession of a prohibited weapon and possession of an item that could be used as a weapon.
In March 2000, police raided the Life and Death gang clubhouse in Windsor and arrested seven members on drugs and firearms offences and seized $500,000 worth of drugs and another $500,000 in goods.

Jayme Norman Russell and Thomas Crawford, the alleged No 1 and 2, respectively, of the Kamloops' cell of one of Western Canada's most powerful gangs,

The arrest outside of Kamloops's most notorious strip club last March was was sudden, loud and dramatic.With guns drawn, members of the RCMP detachment's elite emergency response team detonated concussion grenades then swarmed the parking lot of the Rendezvous Hotel before hauling off two unidentified men. Police refused to release names or charges and the city's media soon became impatient for answers.
Expectations were high when, two days later, a news conference was called at the downtown detachment on Battle Street.Cameras flashed inside the packed room as Insp. Yves Lacasse, along with Supt. Jim Begley and Kamloops Mayor Terry Lake, announced that city police had dealt a decisive blow to the Kamloops chapter of the Independent Soldiers gang by arresting the men they suspected to be the gang's top two leaders.Arrested on drug and weapons charges outside of the Rendezvous Hotel two days earlier, Lacasse confirmed, had been 26-year-olds Jayme Norman Russell and Thomas Crawford, the alleged No 1 and 2, respectively, of the Kamloops' cell of one of Western Canada's most powerful gangs, said to have connections with the Hell's Angels.Body shots of both men, on display in the room, showed the gang's name tattooed in script on their thick forearms.Lacasse explained their busts had been the culmination of a five-month undercover probe into the city's drug trade launched as part of the detachment's new crime reduction strategy. Initially targeting street dealers, he said the focus of the investigation moved to the "upper echelons" after police managed to shut down some of the city's more prolific drug houses.In total, he said undercover officers bought $60,000 worth of cocaine, crystal meth and other drugs from up to 35 other street- and mid-level dealers during the course of the probe.Russell and Crawford, he alleged, were at the top of the drug pyramid. Both were charged with trafficking cocaine while Crawford was also hit with a weapons charge for allegedly selling a .357 magnum handgun to an undercover officer.
They were later released on a bail.News of their arrests was met with applause from the city, with Lake taking the podium afterward to commend the RCMP for cracking down on the city's drug trade and
The fact Russell already had outstanding assault charges for allegedly holding a gun to the neck of a man outside of a Kamloops bar in 2006, added weight to Lacasse's statement that a severe blow had been dealt to the gang.
Further weight was added this January when Russell was arrested and charged with attempted murder for allegedly stabbing32-year-old Chad Porter three times in the neck outside of Cactus Jack's Saloon. Unconfirmed reports following the stabbing connected Porter to the notorious UN gang.Russell was denied bail on the new charge and held at the Kamloops Regional Correctional Centre in anticipation of his upcoming trials.But a year after the dramatic arrest outside of the Rendezvous, Kamloops authorities are not much further ahead in their fight against the Independent Soldiers, due, largely, to unco-operative witnesses during the court process.

Monday, 16 June 2008

Justin James “Mooch” Deloretto president of a newly formed Oregon chapter of the Mongols Motorcycle Club

The incident began when the investigators — Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Special Agent James Packard and Eugene police Detective Dave Burroughs — were searching for the residence of Justin James “Mooch” Deloretto, 26, near Turner.Deloretto, according to trial testimony, is president of a newly formed Oregon chapter of the Mongols Motorcycle Club — a group the U.S. Department of Justice labels as a 300-member “extremely violent outlaw motorcycle gang” originating in Southern California that is involved in narcotics, assault and murder.The Mongols moved into Oregon last year without permission from the five other active outlaw motorcycle gangs — a major violation of accepted protocol among the gangs, according to Packard, who has investigated outlaw motorcycle gangs for 25 years, instructs other police agencies and is a recognized expert witness on the topic.He noted that the vast majority of motorcycle club members are law-abiding. But Packard said outlaw gang members distinguish themselves by wearing a “1 percent” patch on their clothing, indicating that they are the 1 percent of riders who are not law-abiding.The Mongols’ intrusion set up a potential conflict between the Mongols and the other clubs, but particularly with the Gypsy Jokers because the Gypsy Jokers and the Mongols both claim the same colors for their insignia — black and white, Packard testified.
Clubs’ insignia are no small matter among members. In fact, insignia are central to each club’s identity and are awarded in stages as members work their way up from “hang arounds” to “prospects” to “full-patch members,” Packard said.Potential members are invited to apply, and do so as though looking for a job — divulging family relationships, criminal records, education and personal history that the club then confirms. It may take six weeks to two years to advance from “hang around” to full membership — with insignia awarded as the candidate progresses through the three levels, Packard said.Most of the gangs display insignia in three parts — an upper patch naming the club, a lower patch identifying their home base and an elaborate central depiction of their mascot or club symbol. The patches are awarded to signify a member’s level of advancement toward full membership.
Generally, full membership requires a 100 percent vote of approval by members of a local chapter, Packard said.The clubs’ insignia, or “colors,” are so revered that a member who drops his on the ground may be fined or disciplined. Rival clubs often will display colors taken forcibly from an enemy, hanging them upside-down in their clubhouse as a trophy, Packard said.“That is their pride in possession,” Packard told a 12-member jury. “It means everything to a member. It means loyalty and brotherhood to those groups. They will fight and die for those colors.”Oregon had four outlaw motorcycle gangs until the Vagos Motorcycle Club sought permission to operate in the state, and was voted in by the other four, in the mid-1990s, Packard said.The Mongols’ failure to seek permission, and their conflicting colors with the Gypsy Jokers, raised concerns among law enforcement officials around Eugene when the local chapter of the Free Souls Motorcycle Club threw its annual birthday party in February, Packard testified.The party draws a couple of hundred Free Souls members from other chapters around the country. Contingents from the other Oregon clubs typically are invited to the festivities, usually riding separately to Eugene, Packard said.However, officers who monitor the event were alarmed this year when they observed a gathering of about 100 motorcyclists from the five established clubs riding together from Salem toward Eugene. Police feared the united approach may signal a joint effort to drive out the Mongols, who were gathered at a Springfield motel, he said.In order to warn the Mongols of the potential danger and to try to ward off trouble, Packard introduced himself to DeLoretto at a Mongol gathering in the motel parking lot. The meeting was cordial, said Packard, who testified that he frequently talks with club members and leaders to gather information.“I wanted to give them a heads-up,” Packard said. “Mr. Deloretto said they were aware of the bikers coming from Salem, that he had his own eyes and ears out there. He said they weren’t looking for trouble, but they wouldn’t back down.”Packard contacted Deloretto a few hours later to tell him that police had found firearms when they stopped the presidents of a couple of the gang chapters who had come to Eugene for the Free Souls celebration. He said Deloretto thanked him, but said his club nonetheless would frequent the same bars it had the previous evening.No violence occurred during the weekend, Packard said.A few months later, in an effort to find Deloretto’s residence, Packard and Burroughs drove up a secluded single-lane driveway near Turner and encountered Deloretto driving out, Packard said.
The officers backed out of the driveway and drove off, and DeLoretto followed them, first north into Salem and then south into Eugene. Just south of the Harlow Road overpass, two associates of Deloretto — Nathan Andrew Cassidy, 22, of Creswell, and Matthew Aaron Weiss, 24, of Eugene — joined in separate vehicles. The menallegedly used their three vehicles to box in the officers’ unmarked sport utility vehicle in an attempt to force it off the road.Packard said he took evasive action, turned on the vehicle’s emergency siren and lights, and summoned police patrol units.
In an interview after his arrest, Deloretto told Packard he did not realize the men he followed were police. His lawyer, Kelly Beckley of Eugene, is arguing that Deloretto acted legally in protection of his property.Cassidy and Weiss have been convicted and sentenced to 90 days and 30 days in jail, respectively.Deloretto’s trial is expected to conclude next week. He is charged with two counts each of conspiring to coerce, coercion, conspiring to unlawful use of a weapon, unlawful use of a weapon, menacing and reckless endangering, and one count of reckless driving. He has been in jail in lieu of a $1 million security deposit.

Sunday, 8 June 2008

Clay Roueche is the leader of the United Nations gang, which got its name from the wide-ranging ethnicity of its members.

Clay Roueche pleaded not guilty Thursday in U.S. District Court in Seattle to allegations that he conspired to bring more than a ton of marijuana into the United States and import more than 11 pounds of cocaine into Canada. Both charges carry mandatory-minimum sentences of 10 years and up to life in prison.Canadian authorities say Roueche is the leader of the United Nations gang, which got its name from the wide-ranging ethnicity of its members.Roueche recently flew from Canada to Mexico. He was denied entry by Mexican authorities, who put him on a flight to Texas, where Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents immediately arrested him.
The U.S. Marshals Service brought him to Seattle to face trial. Royal Canadian Mounted Police Sgt. Bill Whalen, part of a multiagency gang squad, said Thursday that the arrest could "destabilize" the drug-trafficking gang."They have been involved in a fair amount of very serious violence in the lower mainland of British Columbia over the last few years," Whalen said. "There are a number of gang-related murders currently under investigation that they are suspected of being involved in."
Whalen said Roueche started the gang about 10 years ago and has been running it ever since. Assistant U.S. Attorney Susan Roe said Rouech's indictment grew out of Operation Frozen Timber, an investigation launched in 2004 that smashed a ring of smugglers that used helicopters and airplanes to bring potent "B.C. Bud" marijuana into remote parts of Washington.Roueche also faces a charge of money laundering, which can bring up to 20 years in prison.U.S. Magistrate Judge Brian Tsuchida ordered Roueche held pending a detention hearing next week.

Friday, 6 June 2008

Melbourne drug czar Tony Mokbel have revealed a trail of deception, hidden funds and a private yacht modified to hide its passenger from officials.

Melbourne drug czar Tony Mokbel have revealed a trail of deception, hidden funds and a private yacht modified to hide its passenger from officials.
The 17m, A$350,000 ($436,000) Edwena, crewed by Greek sailors flown to Australia for the journey, took Mokbel to a new life of luxury in Greece, where he was joined by his pregnant partner after she eluded police in Rome.
Mokbel is now back in Melbourne after the Supreme Court in Athens ordered his extradition on a series of charges, including murder. He has already been sentenced to 12 years' jail for importing 2kg of cocaine.Mokbel was on bail awaiting sentence for his cocaine conviction when he vanished in March 2006, leaving his sister-in-law to face jail for a A$1 million surety she could not pay.Yesterday's revelation by police of Mokbel's escape by sea completes a trail that began when he fled a step ahead of a barrage of new charges, and saw him placed on Interpol's most-wanted list, with a A$1 million reward on his head. His flight has also resulted in the arrest of a three people in connection with his escape and the use of the proceeds of crime to bring it about.Detective Inspector Bernie Edwards, of the Purana Taskforce established by the Victorian Police to investigate the underworld killings, told ABC radio that more arrests may be made.Soon after Mokbel vanished, police were told he had been killed by the Calabrian mafia and buried in an already-occupied grave in rural Victoria, prompting an initial search using sonar equipment of two cemeteries in Tatura. But new information convinced police the story had been concocted to throw them off the scent.Investigators trailed his partner, Danielle McGuire as she took her 11-year-old daughter on a holiday to Europe. She gave them the slip in Rome. Mokbel by that time was living in an apartment in Athens costing more than A$3000 a month.Edwards told the ABC yesterday that Mokbel had fled initially to a hideout at Bonnie Doon, west of Melbourne, while his associates bought the Edwena in Sydney, sailed it to Newcastle, and arranged its transport across Australia.Mokbel and associates followed the yacht by four-wheel-drive to Fremantle, where it was fitted with a hiding place for Mokbel, larger fuel tanks and a self-righting mast.The yacht arrived in Greece on the following Christmas Eve, and remains berthed in Athens. Safely in Greece, Mokbel set up home with McGuire, proudly saw his daughter Renate born, and met with friends and associates. Police also alleged he had taken a small fortune with him. But on June 5 last year he was arrested, beginning an exhaustive, seven-month battle against extradition.
On May 17 he flew into Melbourne's Tullamarine Airport aboard a chartered executive jet, surrounded by police.

Thursday, 5 June 2008

MS-13 arrests, which resulted from a total of 22 early-morning search warrants executed in the three areas of the GTA, obtained cocaine, firearms

In an effort to crack down on a gang from gaining traction in the Greater Toronto Area, a co-ordinated effort between police forces in Toronto, York Region and Peel Region has resulted in 21 arrests.More than 20 people alleged to be a part of a growing South American street gang, are facing drugs and weapons charges following a series of police raids across the GTA today, including four in Mississauga.
Toronto police headed the large probe, which included raids on homes in Mississauga's City Centre area.So far, 21 people have been arrested. The names of those charged and other details are expected to be released tomorrow morning.
During the spring of 2008, investigators from the Integrated Gun & Gang Task Force, which includes officers from Peel, looked into the distribution of controlled drugs, firearms, and acts of violence surrounding a group of men in the northwest area of Toronto and surrounding region. As a result, investigators identified numerous people and addresses allegedly used to facilitate the distribution of illicit drugs and weapons, according to Toronto Deputy Police Chief Tony Warr. Some of the persons identified are believed to be members of the organized criminal street gang known as MS 13The violent gang is composed mostly of Salvadorans, Guatemalans, Hondurans, and people from other Central and South American countries.
The gang has moved beyond its Salvadoran and American origins and now can be found in other nations, including Canada, Mexico, Guatemala, Colombia, Spain, Great Britain and Germany. Police say the gang's criminal activities have included murder, drug smuggling and sales, black market gun sales, human trafficking, theft and assaults.Investigators have seized large quantities of cocaine, firearms and other prohibited weapons and a significant amount of cash related to proceeds of crime, in the GTA probe. The arrests, which resulted from a total of 22 early-morning search warrants executed in the three areas of the GTA, obtained cocaine, firearms and cash related to proceeds of crime, police said. In Toronto, the searches were focused in the northwest portion of the city. The investigation focused on an international gang, MS-13, with ties to the United States and South America.Police made the announcement in a brief press conference Wednesday, June 4, afternoon at police headquarters.

Bandidos,Police have located a firearm during a morning raid on an outlaw motorcycle gang clubhouse

Police have located a firearm during a morning raid on an outlaw motorcycle gang clubhouse in Sydney’s west following an investigation into licensing breaches.
Operation Indianna, run by Blacktown Local Area Command, saw the gathering of intelligence into a clubhouse run by the Bandidos on Mort Street, Blacktown. It will be alleged alcohol was being sold illegally at the property which does not have a liquor licence.
At 8am, police from Blacktown Local Area Command – including the Proactive Crime Team, General Duties, Highway Patrol, Detectives, Crime Management Unit and Licensing – forced entry into the premises which were unoccupied at the time.
They were assisted by the Public Order and Riot Squad, the Dog Unit, the Rescue and Bomb Disposal Unit, Police Airwing and the Gangs Squad.In a garage at the rear of the property police located a bar with hundreds of bottles of alcohol worth thousands of dollars, a semi-automatic pistol, ammunition, knuckle-dusters, cash, and a till.Police also discovered an illegal electricity reconnection which was allegedly being used to steal power.Operation Indianna falls under the scope of Operation Ranmore which was formed in May last year to crackdown on all criminal activities conducted by outlaw motorcycle gang members.There have been a total of 539 OMCG members and their associates arrested in that time with more than 1290 charges laid. The charges range from traffic matters to drug supply, as well as affray, and participation in criminal group.Blacktown Acting Commander, Acting Superintendent Gary Hutchen, said police would continue to target the activities of outlaw motorcycle gangs in the Blacktown area.“We’ll do that through high visibility policing, licensing operations such as this one today and extensive investigations into any allegations of criminality,” he said. “We want to send a strong message to these people that anti-social and criminal behaviour will not be tolerated.”

LaAunzae was a Vice Lord, and Donald Ragland was a Gangster Disciple

2005 execution-style murder in Frayser was a case marked by "gangs, guns and death."
And not incidentally, they added, there was an element of revenge when defendant Donald Ragland Jr. shot 26-year-old LaAunzae Grady three times in the back on a cold December afternoon outside of St. Elmo's Market."He didn't have a problem taking this job, because LaAunzae had killed his brother five or six years before this," gang unit prosecutor Ray Lepone told a Criminal Court jury. "LaAunzae was a Vice Lord, and Donald Ragland was a Gangster Disciple."Asst. Public Defender Trent Hall said prosecutors would not be able to prove their case and asked jurors to acquit Ragland, 27, of first-degree murder.On Wednesday, jurors watched a surveillance video from the store that showed an apparently nervous Grady looking out the front door of the store several times before finally leaving.A half-dozen loud gunshots then quickly follow, though the shooting on the outside parking lot is not captured by the indoor cameras.The first officer to the scene, Patrolman James Watts, said Grady was on his back near the front door, barely breathing and surrounded by seven shell casings from a 9mm pistol.In May 1999, Grady was involved in the shooting death of Ragland's brother, Eric Ragland, 16, at 3842 Schoolfield in Frayser. Grady was convicted of manslaughter and served a short prison sentence.
Grady's death in 2005 got national exposure on the A&E network reality crime program "The First 48."As episode 40, it was simply titled "Unmasked."Witnesses in the case said they noticed a man standing outside the market wearing a ski mask and a long overcoat, and with his hands in his pockets.Police say the masked man was Ragland, who was arrested Dec. 12, 2005, three days after the shooting.Several prospective jurors for the trial were excused earlier this week after they acknowledged they had seen the episode.Last month Memphis Police Director Larry Godwin said the department would not renew its contract with "The First 48" after several City Council members complained that the popular program made the city look dangerous.

Los Hermanos de Pistoleros Latinos are known for such peculiarities as having life-size tattoos of handguns inked onto their waists

Los Hermanos de Pistoleros Latinos the little-known gang, whose name translates as Brotherhood of Latin Gunmen, seems to be breaking into the big time. A federal indictment accuses 24 members and associates of operating a smuggling ring that sneaked bulk amounts of cocaine and millions of dollars between Mexico, the border city of Laredo and Houston.Despite its ties to Mexico's major drug-trafficking cartels, the organization known as HPL hasn't captured the public's attention like the Texas Syndicate or the Mexican Mafia, officials said Monday."They are lower on the radar, but they have always been there," said Victor Gonzalez, director of program services for the Houston mayor's anti-gang office. "They have a tendency to roll on their own."HPL gangsters are known for such peculiarities as having life-size tattoos of handguns inked onto their waists so when they remove their shirts the marks resemble weapons sticking out of their pants.All members are either in prison or have served time.Although 21 people were arrested in a series of raids that started at sunrise Friday, three men remained on the run Monday, with federal agents and police scouring their known haunts, from here to the Rio Grande."We're doing everything possible to locate them throughout the state of Texas, other states and even across the border in Mexico," FBI spokeswoman Pat Villafranca said. "We're knocking on doors and asking questions, so the word is out."
Eric Lee Rodriguez, who marked his 36th birthday Monday, is believed to be near Corpus Christi. Terrance Dale Robinson, 40, is believed to be in Houston.The other fugitive is Juan Manuel Hernandez, 33, who federal agents thought was in Houston, but came up empty Friday after surrounding a home with a SWAT team.Missing Hernandez wasn't an embarrassment to agents, but is part of doing business when it comes to rounding up so many people in one day, Villafranca said.
Although the arrests show authorities are going after the HPL, the action isn't likely to significantly disrupt the group.
"The thing is, they are getting caught, which is the good part," said Sig Sanchez, head of the gang department for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.
"It sends a message," Sanchez said of the arrests. "If we catch you, you are going back to jail."
Prison gangs are different than a street gang, as their organizations were born behind bars and are established for the long term, Sanchez said.
The HPL runs, in many ways, like the Mexican Mafia, as it has its constitution, traditions and requires a lifetime commitment.

Monday, 2 June 2008

Mafia gunned down Italian businessman Michele Orsi who was helping police break organised crime gangs

Italian businessman who was helping police break organised crime gangs that operate waste disposal rackets in Naples was gunned down on Sunday in an apparent mafia hit, police said.The latest killing in the southern Italian city, which in recent months has become as famous for its piles of trash as for its reputation for crime, came on a day that thousands of people attended a rally against plans to open new rubbish dumps.Police said Michele Orsi, a businessman with mafia links who had turned informant, was shot three times near his home by assailants who were lying in wait. Orsi, who worked in the waste disposal business, had spent time in jail last year during an investigation into mafia involvement in the trade. He turned informant and gave evidence against a suspect at a court hearing two weeks ago."The case is even more serious than previous ones. This was a businessman from the Caserta area (of Naples) who, although he had colluded with organised crime, was helping investigations," said anti-mafia investigator Franco Roberti.Crime experts say the Camorra, the Naples mafia, has been involved in the lucrative waste dumping business for decades -- one of the reasons the city's refuse system ground to a halt at the end of last year when all official dumps were declared full.
Political inadequacy and local opposition to new waste disposal sites has hampered years of attempts to clean up what has become a chronic problem in Italy's third largest city.Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's new conservative government, which campaigned in April's election promising to clean up Naples' trash crisis, has vowed to force open new trash dumps and face down local opposition with the army if necessary.Some 10,000 protestors held a peaceful rally on Sunday outside the site of one of the new dumps, some shouting: "Berlusconi dictator".

Joseph Andrew Farnsworth was arrested Saturday on suspicion of shooting a Hells Angels associate to death on Highway 101

Joseph Andrew Farnsworth was arrested at a residence on Rheem Avenue in Richmond after Marin detectives arrived with a search warrant, said sheriff's Sgt. Keith Boyd. Investigators seized a 9mm handgun and are conducting ballistics tests to determine whether it was used in the killing.19-year-old El Cerrito man was arrested Saturday on suspicion of shooting a Hells Angels associate to death on Highway 101 last weekend, joining a 20-year-old Mill Valley woman in the Marin County Jail pending a court appearance Tuesday.The second suspect, Jessica Andrea Gordon, has been in custody since her arrest early Thursday. Authorities did not immediately release her name because of security concerns and efforts to "maintain the integrity of the criminal investigation," Boyd said.The suspected motive for the shooting is road rage."This appears to have no tie to any affiliations or relationship that William Maclean may have had to the Hells Angels," Boyd said of the victim.Maclean, 25, of San Leandro, was shot to death at about 8:15 p.m. May 24 on Highway 101 near Corte Madera. Maclean and Foakes were in a pickup that was leading a procession of bikers to Sonoma County after a Hells Angels funeral in Colma.Shortly after the convoy passed Tiburon Boulevard on northbound 101, there was a conflict in traffic and someone fired at the pickup from a red sport utility vehicle described as a Dodge Durango. Maclean, riding in the passenger seat of the pickup, was struck in the upper body.
Foakes, who was at the wheel, drove the truck to the Paradise Drive exit and called 911 from the pay phone at the California Highway Patrol's office on San Clemente Drive. Maclean was taken to Marin General Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Two suspects are in custody pending an initial court appearance on Tuesday. Jessica Andrea Gordon, 20, of Mill Valley was arrested early Thursday morning, and sheriff's investigators impounded a Dodge Durango from her residence.
Farnsworth was arrested Saturday afternoon after Marin detectives served a search warrant at a residence in Richmond. Investigators seized a 9mm handgun and are conducting ballistics tests to determine whether it was used in the killing.
The suspected motive for the shooting is road rage. The sheriff's department said Maclean's association with the motorcycle club does not appear to be a factor.
Investigators suspect Farnsworth was the shooter but have released no details about Gordon's suspected role in the incident. No charges have been filed.
"Ms. Gordon had no foreknowledge of the shooting, was in no way involved with the shooting, and is not guilty of murder," her attorney, Douglas Horngrad, said Sunday. "She, like everyone else, mourns the loss of life here."
As for Gordon's relationship with Farnsworth, Horngrad said: "Farnsworth, at most, is a casual acquaintance of Ms. Gordon's."
A public defender visited Farnsworth at the county jail Sunday afternoon. Public Defender Joseph Spaeth said his office had no comment on the case.

Sunday, 1 June 2008

Arrested members of the violent Norteno street gang, which terrorized Stockton with drive-by shootings and crystal methamphetamine trafficking

California Department of Justice special agents, in partnership with the Stockton Police Department, today arrested members of the violent Norteno street gang, which terrorized Stockton with drive-by shootings and crystal methamphetamine trafficking at the direction of the Nuestra Familia prison mafia.
“The Norteno street gang increased its drug trafficking and violent criminal activity in Stockton after our gang suppression team shut down one of its competitors, the Loc Town Crips, last year,” said Attorney General Brown. “Today’s crackdown demonstrates the importance of keeping relentless pressure on gangs that sell crystal meth and terrorize the public. The Stockton Police Department should be commended for its efforts to drive this street gang out of the city.”
The California Department of Justice Gang Suppression Enforcement Team, known as GSET, joined the Stockton Police Department in October 2007 to crack down on a violent Norteno gang which had recently increased its activity in Stockton. Last year, state agents shut down a violent Cambodian street gang in Stockton, the Loc Town Crips. The elimination of the Crips gang increased the opportunity for Nortenos to traffic crystal methamphetamine and commit assaults and drive by shootings.
“In the fight against gang violence in California it is important to follow-up after a crime sweep to prevent gang activity from returning,” said Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement Assistant Chief Jerry Hunter “This crackdown demonstrates that the attorney general’s gang enforcement team is committed to running meth traffickers out of town.”Norteno gang members in San Joaquin and Stanislaus Counties have committed an increasing number of gang-related shootings, stabbings, carjackings and residential robberies according to Stockton Police Department Detective James Ridenour. Today the Norteno street gang, which was first identified in the City of Stockton in 1990, has approximately 1,180 members and associates in Stockton.
This morning state agents and local police arrested 8 validated gang members and 6 affiliates, served 9 search warrants, conducted 4 parole searches and 2 probation searches. Agents seized 15 guns including 1 nine millimeter semi-automatic handgun, 2 rifles, 1 shotgun and various other handguns and ammunition. Agents also seized cocaine, methamphetamine, $42,000, and are a continuing to serve search warrants in Tracy, Lodi and Stockton.All gang members arrested could face from three years up to 25 years to life in prison depending upon the charges which include possession of crystal meth for sales, weapons violations, conspiracies and participation in criminal street gangs and street terrorism including Penal Code Section 186.22.The Nortenos arrested today were involved in street level drug trafficking, conspiracies to commit assault and multiple weapons violations. During the investigation which led to today’s arrests, agents arrested 14 suspected gang members in Tracy, Lodi and Stockton.Nortenos are a Hispanic street gang controlled by Nuestra Familia, a rival of the Mexican Mafia, which was organized in Folsom State Prison in 1968 are operates primarily in the northern parts of California. The two prison mafias divide California into northern and southern territories through a line that runs between Delano to Salinas. Norteno gang members advertise their gang affiliation with symbols including the number 14, “209”, and “XIV” in graffiti, on clothing, and on tattoos. The gang members often claim the color red.Agencies involved in today’s crackdown include the California Department of Justice Gang Suppression Enforcement Team, Stockton Police Department, Lodi Police Department, Tracy Police Department, Manteca Police, San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office, The Central Valley Gang Impact Team, Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms, California Highway Patrol, San Joaquin County Probation, State Parole, and the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office.
The California Department of Justice launched the Gang Suppression Enforcement Team in 2006 in response to rising levels of street gang and violent criminal activity in California. There are gang suppression teams Los Angeles, Riverside, San Francisco and Fresno which disrupt the organizational flow of gangs to fight for a terror-free environment in California by:Identifying key gang leaders and ultimately dismantling the organization’s hierarchySeizing street gang assetsGathering intelligence and sharing analysis with law enforcement agenciesState investigators often assist local law enforcement when the gang problem has become so severe that the crime is bleeding into neighboring jurisdictions. Approximately 27 percent of all California homicides between 1996 and 2005 were gang related.
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