27 November 2012: Jay Leiderman quoted: Police say Mexican Mafia prison gang led crime ring in Ventura County [27 November 2012]

Jay Leiderman
By: Jay Leiderman
December 28 2016

Police say Mexican Mafia prison gang led crime ring in Ventura County


Police say Mexican Mafia prison gang led crime ring in Ventura County
By Jennifer Letzer
Originally published 12:50 p.m., November 27, 2012
Updated 05:32 p.m., November 27, 2012

A 39-year-old man in an out-of-state prison directed a crime ring in Ventura County that forced competing gangs to work together and funneled money back to the Mexican Mafia prison gang, authorities said Tuesday.

Martin Madrigal was among 27 people, including two teens, who were indicted and accused of crimes such as conspiring to commit assault, extortion, home invasion, robbery and drug trafficking, Ventura County sheriff’s and district attorney’s officials said at a news conference.

All but two have been arrested, and at least 16 more are expected to be indicted, officials said. (Images: Local gang members with alleged ties to Mexican Mafia)

Edwin Mora
Jay Leiderman stands with his client, Edwin Mora during a court hearing. Edwin Mora is charged with being the lead defendant in a conspiracy to benefit the Mexican Mafia. Jay and Eddie have been fighting this case for two years and will keep fighting until a victory. Mr. Mora faces over 300 years and 10 life sentences if he is convicted.

The suspects are largely members of local gangs who worked with the Mexican Mafia, authorities said.
“These are hard-core criminal gang members. They wake up every day and try to decide where they’re going to commit crimes,” Sheriff Geoff Dean said at the news conference.

Authorities have seized 32 weapons, $36,000 in cash and a quarter-pound of heroin, officials said.
The Mexican Mafia is an organized prison gang that orders crimes such as killings, extortion and drug dealing inside and outside prisons, authorities say. The gang controls many Southern California street gangs, officials allege.

Officials said that in Ventura County, the Mexican Mafia forced rival street gangs into working together to commit violent crimes — something authorities had not seen before. Dean said the gang’s use of fear and intimidation shows how powerful it can be.

“The shot caller was at such a high level of the Mexican Mafia that they knew they had to comply,” Dean said of Madrigal.

The investigation, known as Operation Wicked Hand, began in April after investigators learned of a connection between two shootings in Moorpark and a heroin bust about the same time.

Those incidents were orchestrated by Edwin Mora, 28, a high-ranking associate of the Mexican Mafia who helped carry out orders from Madrigal, authorities said.

During the investigation, deputies thwarted crimes including two planned killings and a drugstore robbery in Ventura County, officials said.

The 35-count felony indictment from a Ventura County grand jury was returned Nov. 14, according to District Attorney Greg Totten. Arrests were later made in Oxnard, Simi Valley, Moorpark and other cities during a five-day period.

Madrigal is serving time for unrelated criminal charges at a prison outside California, which officials declined to identify. Dean said authorities “don’t want to jeopardize that part of the investigation.”

Details on how Madrigal allegedly communicated with Mora and ordered gang members to carry out crimes also were not disclosed.

Three of those indicted — David Acosta, 37, Alfred Perez, 28, and Javier Tamayo, 34 — face multiple 25-year-to-life sentences under the “three-strikes” law, Totten said.

Bail for the 27 defendants ranged from $1 million to $5 million. None has posted bail.

Jay Leiderman, Mora’s defense attorney, said he found it troublesome that transcripts from the grand jury have not been made available. Leiderman declined to comment on the allegations against his client without having seen the transcripts but said he planned to refute them.

“Investigators like to wave around the word ‘gang.’ They use it to strike fear in the heart of the community. It tends to also involve a lot of puffery and allegations that maybe perhaps aren’t 100 percent solid,” Leiderman said.

Edwin Mora was one of the 27 people arrested after a Grand Jury indictment accused them of a gang conspiracy centered around the Mexican Mafia prison gang. Photo courtesy of the Ventura County Sheriff’s department.

100 thoughts on “27 November 2012: Jay Leiderman quoted: Police say Mexican Mafia prison gang led crime ring in Ventura County [27 November 2012]

  1. Partnerships Against Violence – PAVNET – currently offline
    Partnerships Against Violence (PAVNET) is a “virtual library” with information about violence and youth-at-risk, representing data from seven different federal agencies. Violence prevention professionals can communicate and share resources through the Pavnet mail group.
    URL: http://www.pavnet.org/

  2. I urged my lawyer to come, he looked at me and asked, what is wrong? Gazing at him said, I don’t regret committing that felony against them I need to be punished lets go to court. Having no reaction, looking disoriented he opened the door walked me to his car & drove to court. Standing opposite the judge I stared at him bluntly, he was reviewing my report looked at me ushered to sit in the box to be persecuted. The defense lawyer aware of my crimes seemed intrigued and asked, madam what caused you to retaliate against your Spirit & Soul?.
    Reason is a libertarian monthly print magazine covering politics, culture, and ideas through a provocative mix of news, analysis, commentary, and reviews.

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    Content from PoetrySoup.com. Read more at: http://www.poetrysoup.com/poems/best/lawyer
    Copyright © PoetrySoup and Respective Poets.

  3. “Ideas are indeed the most dangerous weapons in the world.
    Our ideas of freedom are the most powerful
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  4. Now the police coming with his ball and chain
    Police coming with his ball and chain
    And they accusing me of murder, never harmed a man

    Now some got six months, some got one solid year
    Some got six months, some got one solid year
    Now me and my buddy got a lifetime here

    Now the judge he pleaded, clerk, he wrote it down
    Judge he pleaded, clerk, he wrote it down
    That if I miss jail sentence now, must be Joliet bound

    Now cook my supper, let me go to bed
    Cook my supper now, let me go to bed
    I’ve been drinking white lightning and it’s gone to my head

    Now you quit me baby, first thing you want to do
    Quit me baby, first thing you want to do
    Some day you gonna want me, cinch and I won’t want you

    Now the police shivved his old pistol in my side
    Police shivved his old pistol in my side
    Said if you run big boy, now, must be born to die

    When they had my trial, you could not be found
    Had my trial, you could not be found
    Now I done got all messed up and I’m Joliet bound

    The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children

  5. The judge he pleaded, the clerk he wrote it
    The clerk he wrote it down indeed-e
    The judge decreed it, the clerk he wrote it down
    If you miss jail sentence, you must be Nashville bound

    Some got six months, some got one solid
    Some got one solid year, indeed Lord
    Some got six months, some got one solid year
    But me and my buddy, we got lifetime here

    Fix my supper, mama, let me go to
    Let me go to bed, indeed Lord
    Fix my supper, let me go to bed
    I’ve been drinking white lightning, and it just gone to my head

    Lawyer, Attorney, Law Firms, Attorneys, Legal Information. Lawyers.com

  6. Riding down the river in an old canoe
    A bunch of bugs and an old tennis shoe
    Out of the river all ugly and green
    The biggest old alligator that I’ve ever seen
    Teeth big and pointed and his eyes were bugging out
    Contact the union, put the beggars to route
    Screaming and yelling and licking his chops
    He never runs he just stumbles and hops
    Just out of prison on six dollars bail
    Mumbling at bitches and wagging his tail
    Statistics of incarcerated African-American males – Wikipedia

  7. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention – OJJDP
    The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) provides resources to prevent and respond to juvenile delinquency and victimization. Find information on grants, funding, news, conferences and programs.
    URL: http://ojjdp.ncjrs.gov/

  8. Royal Canadian Mounted Police – RCMP
    The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) is the Canadian national police service and an agency of the Ministry of Public Safety Canada. The RCMP is unique in the world since it is a national, federal, provincial and municipal policing body, providing a total federal policing service to all Canadians and policing services under contract to the three territories, eight provinces (except Ontario and Quebec), more than 190 municipalities, 184 Aboriginal communities and three international airports.
    URL: http://www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/index-eng.htm

  9. It all started with the birth of La Eme leaders in the 1920s

    April 24, 1923

    Henry “Hank” Leyva born in Tuscon, Arizona.

    April 10, 1929

    Joe “Pegleg” Morgan born.


    1st generation “Originals” of Hoyo Maravilla gang forms.


    2nd generation “Cherries” of Hoyo Maravilla gang forms.

    December 1941

    Henry “Hank” Leyva, Joe Valenzuela and Jack Melendez all members from 38th street gang in Long Beach arrested on suspicion of armed robbery. Charges dropped against Joe Valenzuela and Jack Melendez but Leyva is rebooked on a charge of assault with a deadly weapon. Leyva pled guilty and received a 3 month county jail term.

  10. August 2, 1942

    Gang fight involving 38th street gang from Long Beach and a Downey gang results in the death

    of Jose Diaz.

    January 13, 1943

    11 members of the 38th street gang are sentenced to prison for the murder of Jose Diaz.

    June 3, 1943

    The Zoot Suite Riots erupt in Los Angeles. Many blame the racial tension in the city as a result of the

    treatment hispanics were subjected to while they searched for the killers of Jose Diaz.

    October 4, 1943

    District Court of Appeals dismisses the case against the members of the 38th st., and orders them

    freed from custody.

  11. 1946

    Joe Morgan [Maravilla gang] beats the husband of his 32 year old girlfriend to death and buries

    the body in a shallow grave. While awaiting trial he escapes using the identification papers of a

    fellow inmate awaiting transfer to a forestry camp. He is recaptured and sentenced to 9 years at

    San Quentin.


    South Ontario Black Angels gang is formed. The gang takes its name from a popular comic book

    of the time. Frank “Mosca” Castrejon is amoung the founders.


    A.-Mexican Mafia forms at the Duel Vocational Institute at Tracey, California. Originally

    consists of 13 core members.

    B.-Joe Morgan is released on parole after 9 years behind bars.

    C.-The group’s legend begins attracting new members.

  12. 1956

    Morgan is returned to prison after a brazen machine gun robbery of a West Covina bank.


    Authorities note an escalation in violent crimes committed by Los Angeles Hispanic gang



    San Francisco gang member Michael ‘Hacha’ Ison is committed to California youth authority after

    he and his brother attack a barber with a baseball bat.

    February 13, 1958

    Reuben Ramos (20) and Lorenzo Castro (18) kidnap and shoot George Rodriquez (13) and

    Gerald De Lao members of a rival gang. De Lao was killed in the attack.

  13. May 13, 1958

    Los Angeles Sheriff’s deputy Ned Lovretovich is stabbed in court after offering testimony in the

    murder robbery trial of Gregory H. Valenzuela and Augustin Acosta two gang members from

    East Los Angeles.


    Mexican Mafia members murder guard at San Quentin

    December 23, 1959

    16 year old Rudy Cadena begins serving a prison sentence for second degree murder at the Chino

    Institute for men..

  14. 1969

    Rudy “Cheyenne” Cadena begins correspondence

    with members of the Latino political group the

    Brown Berets.

  15. September 16 1968

    In retaliation for the murders of Phillip Neri and

    Sonny Pena and a near fatal attack on Hector

    Padilla, Nuestra Familia launches a reprisal attack

    on the Mexican Mafia at 2:30 pm. The final tally

    left 11 wounded and 1 mafia member dead.

    September 16 1968

    In retaliation for the murders of Phillip Neri and

    Sonny Pena and a near fatal attack on Hector

    Padilla, Nuestra Familia launches a reprisal attack

    on the Mexican Mafia at 2:30 pm. The final tally

    left 11 wounded and mafia member Archie

    Gallego, 25, dead.

  16. November 7, 1967

    San Quentin inmate Forrest W. Smith, 42, a

    convicted burglar from Los Angeles is killed in

    the prison hospital by convicted eme hitman

    “Psycho” Leo Estrada Robles.

    September 15 1968

    Hector Padilla a gang member from northern

    California is attacked after a confrontation with

    Eme gang leader Robert “Robot” Salas [Big

    Hazard] over a pair of shoes stolen by Eme

    associate Carlos “Pieface” Ortega [Geraghty

    Loma]. This “the third in a series of Eme led

    attacks on Norteno associates and gang members

    [Phillip Neri and Sonny Pena were killed


  17. 1964

    Mexican Mafia begins induction ceremony (blood oath)


    California Department of Corrections reports the

    Mexican mafia controls the yard at San Quentin

    and has active chapters at Soledad and Folsom


  18. 1962

    Ison acquires the nickname killer after murdering

    inmate Thomas Dever on behalf of the Mexican

    Mafia in San Quentin.

    July 14, 1963

    Eme narcotics chief Harry Gamboa Buckley, 43,

    Monterey Pak is arrested and charged with

    heading a heroin ring which sold $40,000 worth

    of pure heroin. In addition to Buckley, Mary

    Gloria Ramirez, 28, Alhambra, Virginia Rivas

    Garcia, 29, Charlotte O. Vasquez, 36 and Julian

    Molano all of East Los Angeles were also held.

  19. 1960

    Eme begins spreading throughout the California prison system..


    A.-Michael ‘Hacha’ Ison enters the California

    prison after a conviction for assault with a deadly


    B.-Joe Morgan leads 11 inmates in a jail break

    from the L.A., county jail. He had been called as a

    witness in a trial involving the murder of another


  20. In 2007 high ranking Mexican Mafia member Emero Frank “Frankie B” Buelna, 61, is gunned down in a Pomona sports bar. His murder remains unsolved. (Associated Press)

  21. In 2006, 36 Mexican Mafia members are arrested throughout southern California on a federal indictment. (Associated Press)

  22. On January, 2004, Mexican Mafia member’s gun down a member of the Mongols Motorcycle gang after the biker refuses to pay 10% of his methamphetamines sales. (Associated Press)

  23. In 2002, Mexican Mafia members stab prison inmate Jabilia Barragan to death at the High Desert State Prison in Susanville, California. Barragan is murdered for disrespecting one of the gangs Lieutenants. (Gang Intelligence 101)

  24. In 1999, the FBI arrest Mexican Mafia members and associates , Frank Fernandez, Roy Gavaldon, David Gonzales-Contreras , Dominick Gonzales , Jimmy Sanchez , and Suzanne Schoenberg-Sanchez on a variety of RICO and drug-trafficking charges.(U.S. v. Fernandez, 388 F.3d 1199 (9th Cir., 2004)

  25. On October 1998, Mexican Mafia members brutally murder June Flood and Rex Tanner at the couple’s ranch in a home invasion robbery. (State v. Pinder, 2005 UT 15, 114 P.3d 551 (UT, 2005)

  26. On August 14, 1995, Mexican Mafia members brutally murder police informants Randy Morales and Allan Downey (People v. Marquez (Cal. App. 12/2/2008) (Cal. App., 2008)

  27. On April 22 1995, Mexican Mafia members brutally murdered a family of 5 after the family’s father, a former Mexican Mafia member Tony Jesus Moreno, was taking drug cuts from local drug dealers. (Associated Press)

  28. In 1995, 22 Mexican Mafia members and associates are prosecuted under RICO. Several high ranking members begin defecting and “spilling the beans”. (Associated Press)

  29. On December 5, 1993, Mexican Mafia members murder Ricardo “Rascal” Gonzales for interfering with the gangs drug sales. (U.S. v. Shryock, 342 F.3d 948 (9th Cir. 2003)

  30. On August 7, 1993, Aguirre shot and killed Mexican Mafia member Manuel “Rocky” Luna. The police found Luna’s body riddled with gunshot wounds in the driver’s seat of a car parked in Ramona Gardens. Failure to carry out murder. (U.S. v. Shryock, 342 F.3d 948 (9th Cir.)

  31. On February 6, 1993, Mexican Mafia members murder Jose Uribe in the Los Angeles County jail. Uribe’s murder was ordered to keep the victim from testifying in a court trail. Uribe is beaten and stabbed 37 times with a shank. (Alvarado v. Superior Court, 99 Cal.Rptr.2d 149 (Cal., 2000)

  32. In 1993, Orange County law enforcement discover that the Mexican Mafia is conducting mass meetings with numerous street gangs. The Mexican mafia was ordering all street gangs to call a truce and link with the Mexican Mafia. (Gang Intelligence 101)

  33. On May 13, 1992, Jose “Joker” Gonzales, a Hazard gang member, 2 and an unidentified gunman shot Lizarraga thirteen times, killing her. Suspected police informant (U.S. v. Shryock, 342 F.3d 948 (9th Cir. 2003)

  34. On March 25, 1992, Mexican Mafia members murder ex member Charles “Charlie Brown” Manriquez for failure to commit a murder he was ordered to do. (U.S. v. Shryock, 342 F.3d 948 (9th Cir. 2003)

  35. On April 27, 1991, Mexican Mafia members murder “Dirty White Boy” member Charles Sammons at the Portage House Unit at Oxford state prison. Sammons murder was ordered by leaders of MM after Sammons disrespected a member. (Gang Intelligence 101)

  36. In 1991, Mexican Mafia founder Luis “Huero Buff” Flores dies of a heroin over dose. (Gang Intelligence 101)

  37. On January 25, 1989, Mexican Mafia members stab and kill ex Mexican Mafia member Johnny Estrada at the USP-Lompoc federal penitentiary. (U.S. v. Santiago, 46 F.3d 885 (C.A.9 (Cal.), 1995)

  38. On March 14, 1984, Mexican Mafia members stab Nathan Cowger to death at the United States Penitentiary at Marion, Illinois. The murder was ordered because Cowger had disrespected a Mexican mafia member. (Mendoza v. Miller, 779 F.2d 1287 (C.A.7 (Ill.), 1985)

  39. In 1981, Mexican Mafia and Aryan brotherhood members murder black inmate T. Chappelle at the Marion Federal Penitentiary for disrespecting a Mexican mafia member. (U.S. v. Silverstein, 732 F.2d 1338 (C.A.7 (Ill.), 1984)

  40. On October 30, 1978, Robert Martinez, an inmate at the federal penitentiary in Terre Haute, Indiana, died as a result of head injuries inflicted by blunt force approximately an hour before his death. U.S. v. Bruscino, 662 F.2d 450 (C.A.7 (Ind.), 1981)

  41. On October 1975, Mexican Mafia members viciously murder 3 Nuestra Familia members. (Gang Intelligence 101)

  42. July 1975, Mundo Mendoza, Joe Morgan and Eddie Gonzales reorganized the drug trade in the streets of all southern California. Their new policy was to tax all independent drug dealers for selling dope on their territory. (Gang Intelligence 101)

  43. On October 19, 1972, Mexican Mafia members brutally murder Nuestra Familia member Leonard Arias at the C.C.I. state prison in Tehachapi, California. (Mata v. Sumner, 611 F.2d 754 (C.A.9 (Cal.), 1979)

  44. In 1964, Mexican Mafia leaders introduce the “blood in blood out” oath. The oath was formed as a way to ensure loyalty among members.

  45. In 1958, Mexican Mafia members Doroteo Betancourt and Frank Bazure murder a Correctional Officer at the San Quentin state penitentiary. The murder was ordered after the officer assaulted an EME member. (Gang Intelligence 101)

  46. In July 1957, the notorious Mexican Mafia prison gang is founded by Luis “Huero Buff” Flores, Mundo Mendoza, Joe “Peg leg” Morgan and Eddie Gonzales at the Deuel Vocational Institution in Tracy, California. (Gang Intelligence 101)

    After federal and state authorities began going for the head of the Mexican Mafia, dozens of its members began “spilling the beans” to police. High ranking members of the gang decided to put a halt in recruiting new members. As a result the organization has declined in numbers. With doors of the Mexican Mafia currently closed, the Surenos, also known as Sur 13, is becoming the predominate prison gang of all southern California.

  48. The Mexican Mafia is commonly confused with the Texas based Mexikanemi. Both gangs are not linked in any way, shape or form.

  49. The strength of this highly organized paramilitary gang comes from the control it has over most of Southern California’s violent street gangs known as “Surenos”. The Surenos dish up the demands of the Mexican Mafia and carry out most of the organizations contract killings. In 1993, Orange County law enforcement discovered that the Mexican Mafia was conducting mass meetings with numerous street gangs. The Mexican Mafia was ordering all street gangs to call a truce and link with the prison gang.

  50. The notorious Mexican Mafia prison gang was founded by Luis “Huero Buff” Flores, Mundo Mendoza, Joe “Peg leg” Morgan and Eddie Gonzales in July 1957 at the Deuel Vocational Institution in Tracy, California. The gang was formed as a way to unite all Mexican Americans in prison and protect them from predatory black inmates. The Mexican Mafia was the first Hispanic gang to make a career out of being criminals. They control tens of thousands of gangsters through out the streets of California and operate one of the West Coasts most lucrative drug trafficking enterprises.

    Symbols: black hand of death, EME, 13, Emero, So Cal, Mafia Mexicana, Aztec calendar.
    Ranking structure: Paramilitary
    Territory: Los Angeles, San Fernando Valley, San Bernardino, San Diego and cities across central California.
    Alliances: Aryan Brotherhood, Surenos, Hispanic street gangs in southern California.
    Members: 9,000
    Racial make up: Hispanic
    Threat: High

  52. The FBI investigated the case. Trial Attorney Jeffrey Kahan of the Criminal Division’s Capital Case Section and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Valeria Spencer, Susan Knox and M.J. Menendez of the District of Colorado prosecuted the case.

  53. Rivera was convicted of first degree murder following a jury trial and was also sentenced to serve life in federal prison without the possibility of release.

  54. According to Santiago’s plea agreement and evidence presented at the trial of co-defendant Silvestre Mayorqui Rivera, Santiago and Manuel Torrez were members and Rivera was an associate of the Mexican Mafia. Torrez and Santiago arrived at ADX in 2000. On April 21, 2005, shortly after Rivera’s arrival, he and Santiago murdered Torrez while the three were exercising in one of the ADX’s general population unit recreation areas by stomping, kicking and punching Torrez until he was dead.

  55. Richard Santiago, 56, pleaded guilty yesterday before U.S. District Court Judge Robert E. Blackburn of the District of Colorado. Immediately after the guilty plea, Judge Blackburn sentenced Santiago to serve life in federal prison without the possibility of release.

  56. Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Acting U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer of the District of Colorado and Special Agent in Charge Calvin A. Shivers of the FBI’s Denver Division made the announcement.

  57. An inmate at the U.S. Administrative Maximum Prison (ADX) in Florence, Colorado, pleaded guilty to first degree murder and murder by a life prisoner of a fellow ADX inmate.

  58. Authorities admit the operation certainly won’t end gang violence but they’re hoping to put a major dent in the violence seen on the street.

  59. The joint task force is funded by a $9.4 million grant aimed at reducing gang crime in California, especially the Mexican Mafia.

  60. “We just happened to be in the right place at the right time to stop the Mexican MAfia,” said Fontana police Lt. Doug Imhof.

  61. Some of the arrests stemmed from a high-speed chase in December. Members of the task force had been doing surveillance on a home in Rialto when they witnessed a drive-by shooting. They chased after the car and eventually arrested seven people – including one who had been hiding in the trunk.

  62. “We are targeting high-ranking members of the gangs and taking weapons and people off the street. Dope cases and paraphernalia are all part of this investigation,” said San Bernardino County Supervising District Attorney Robert Bulloch.

  63. Before daybreak, the team made up of 350 law enforcement officials served more than 30 search warrants at homes throughout San Bernardino County. They confiscated 19 illegal weapons including handguns, shotguns, and assault rifles. They also confiscated drugs.

  64. They’re calling the round up Operation Bad Blood because the task force was formed after police noticed a rise in violence between rival gangs.

  65. “Armed robberies, carjackings, murder, assault with weapons, narcotics sales. This has been going on for decades,” said Fontana police Sgt. Kevin Goltara.

  66. A total of 67 people have been taken into custody since this investigation began in July.

  67. Officers took 35 people into custody in San Bernardino County Thursday alone. Police say they’re linked to violent street gangs that have ties to the Mexican mafia and are responsible for wreaking havoc in neighborhoods throughout the Inland Empire.

  68. Fontana police joined forces with the Department of Justice and the California Highway Patrol to conduct a massive gang sweep and early morning raids to round up members of the Mexican Mafia.

  69. A major crackdown in the Inland Empire netted dozens of suspected gang members who were involved in crimes ranging from theft and drugs to murder, and believed to be linked to the Mexican mafia, authorities said Thursday.

  70. In a related case, another EMF member, 30-year-old Christian “Bossy” Lafargo, was sentenced to 17 and a half years in federal prison in May after admitting to charges including conspiracy, attempted murder, conspiracy to commit murder, committing violent crime in aid of racketeering and discharging a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence.

  71. Prosecutors claimed EMF was holding meetings and selling drugs from the Boys & Girls Club on Mountain View Road, which was closed a month after the indictment against the gang was unsealed.

  72. Thirty-one of the 41 gang members named in the 2014 indictment have pleaded guilty in connection with the case, Mrozek said.

  73. Rivera pleaded guilty in December to conspiracy to violate the RICO Act and conspiracy to distribute drugs.

  74. Cofer admitted to managing and supervising the gang’s extortion and drug trafficking, including directing the use of violence on behalf of the gang, according to Mrozek. He admitted to authorizing the shooting of someone who had been involved in a dispute with a fellow Mexican Mafia gang member.

  75. In addition to the RICO and conspiracy charges, Cofer also pleaded guilty to an additional charge of possession of a firearm in the furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, Mrozek said.

  76. Gutierrez served a “pivotal role in the gang’s drug distribution, extortion, and violent activity,” according to the prosecution’s sentencing memorandum. Prosecutors described Gutierrez as the lead defendant in the case.

  77. Gutierrez acknowledged in his plea that he regularly extorted “taxes” from drug dealers operating in EMF’s claimed territory, and had authorized an attack on a rival gang member, Mrozek said. Prosecutors noted he has a lengthy criminal history, including racketeering-related murder convictions that resulted in a 20-year prison sentence.

  78. Gutierrez served as a “shot caller,” directing activities of EMF at the behest of the Mexican Mafia.

  79. Gutierrez and Cofer pleaded guilty in April to violating the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), conspiracy to distribute drugs and conspiracy to launder money in connection with a 61-count indictment targeting 41 EMF members first unsealed in 2014.

  80. “We now have secured lengthy prison terms for key members of one of the oldest street gangs in Los Angeles County after using the federal racketeering statute to dismantle the organization’s leadership structure,” according to U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California Eileen M. Decker.

  81. Mexican Mafia shot caller James “Chemo” Gutierrez, 53, and EMF gang member Kenneth Cofer, 37, were sentenced Thursday to 15 years in federal prison each, while co-defendant and fellow EMF member John Rivera, 54, was sentenced to 10 years and 10 months behind bars, U.S. Department of Justice spokesman Thom Mrozek said in a written statement

  82. Three gang members, including a “shot caller” who directed the gang on behalf of the Mexican Mafia, each received sentences of more than decade in prison stemming from a federal investigation targeting the El Monte Flores gang, authorities announced Friday.

  83. If you followed the Code, you had high social status and the support of your peers. You were relatively safe from victimization. If you violated the Code, you were ostracized and therefore in danger. The Code provided order because people cared about their reputations and other prisoners could know who was upstanding and who was not.

  84. Prior to the 1960s, prisoners in California organized their daily lives around the Convict Code. It was an informal norm about what was considered acceptable behavior when interacting with other prisoners:

    Don’t snitch.
    Don’t steal.
    Don’t lie.
    Pay your debts.
    Do your own time.

  85. In my book, The Social Order of the Underworld: How Prison Gangs Govern the American Penal System, I argue that the size of the prison population – and especially the growth in the size of prisons – are crucial factors in explaining when and where gangs dominate prison. For more than 100 years, there were no prison gangs in the California prison system, but today they have a tremendous influence on nearly every aspect of an inmate’s life.

  86. In prisons around the world, inmates often wield a striking amount of authority and control. Research by Sacha Darke, for example, documents how some Brazilian jails have been administered almost entirely by the prisoners. Prisoners maintain the facility, distribute clothing and food, and ensure the security of the prison – even going so far as to handcuff and escort inmates during visit times, conducting strip searches, and completing the evening head count. In Bolivia, and many other parts of Latin America, prisoners themselves play a central role in bringing in necessities, like food, water, and health care supplies. However, this phenomenon is not limited to countries in Latin America. In fact, prison gangs play a similar role today even in many facilities across the United States.

  87. In recent decades, there has been a noticeable trend towards larger prisons of 1,000 prisoners plus. In the USA, the trend has been particularly prevalent – with around 3,500 prisoners per prison in California for example, but other countries have followed a similar path. In this expert blog for PRI, David Skarbek, Senior Lecturer in Political Economy at King’s College London, argues that gang rule or ‘extra-legal governance’ in prisons in California can be explained by the prison boom, in particular the growth in the size of prisons in the 1980s. Simply put, gangs provided the order and safety that management could no longer provide. A return to smaller prisons – where staff and prisoners know each other – should be considered.

  88. Rene Enriquez should be neutered. The Mexican Mafia is a place of honor. Boxer is a rapist and a sex offender.

  89. Agreed. Rene Enriquez is a piece of shit and couldn’t testify in the Ventura Mexican Mafia Trial with Jay Leiderman and Eddie Mora because he was tagged as a liar.

  90. United States of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Ruben Hernandez, a/k/a Tupi, Defendant-Appellant.

  91. United States of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Ruben Hernandez, a/k/a Tupi, Defendant-Appellant.

  92. United States Court of Appeals,Ninth Circuit.
    UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Raymond SHRYOCK, a/k/a Huero Shy, Defendant-Appellant.

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