OCT 19 (NEW ORLEANS) – Walter Porter, 37, a/k/a “Urkel” a/k/a “Moonie”; Nakia Hankton, 34; Shirley Hankton, 58; Telly Hankton, 36,a/k/a “Third” a/k/a “Wild”; Thomas Hankton, 36, a/k/a “Squirt”; Troy Hankton, 28; George Jackson, 38, a/k/a “Black”; Derrick Smothers, 34, a/k/a “Dump”; Andre Hankton, 35;Kevin Jackson, 39; Netthany Schexnayder, 33; Sana Johnson,37; and Terrell Smothers, 36, all of New Orleans, Louisiana, were charged in a twenty-two count superseding indictment by a Federal Grand Jury on Thursday October 18, 2012, in the Eastern District of Louisiana.
The superseding indictment was unsealed today as most of the defendantswere taken into custody by federal agents, or were already in custody on related matters. According to the superseding indictment, members of this organization and their associates ran a violent drug ring in and around the City of New Orleans dating back to 1996. During the course of this investigation, it was determined that Hankton Organization members and associates murdered rival drug dealers, intimidated witnesses, attempted to obstruct the state criminal justice system by having associates provide false alibi testimony in state court, and murdered a witness’ family member in an effort to obstruct justice.
The defendants were charged with various Counts including Murder in Aid of Racketeering, Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances, Conspiracy to Obstruct Justice, Causing Death through Use of a Firearm, Money Laundering, Perjury, and other various Federal Firearms Violations.
Specifically, Andre Hankton, Telly Hankton, Kevin Jackson, Walter Porter,andThomas Hanktonare all charged in specific murders andcould potentially facethe death penalty for the murders of Darnell Stewart, Jesse Reed, Hasan Williams, and Curtis Matthews.
Speaking on today’s indictments, Jimmy S. Fox III, Special Agent in Charge of DEA’s New Orleans Field Division remarked: “ Today’s collaborative law enforcement effort by DEA and our other federal, state and local counterparts sends an undeniable message to drug gangs in the greater New Orleans area: your illegal activities are no longer welcomed here. The indictments of the 13 individuals in this case represent the collective and symbolic voice of the fine citizenry in this community who have resolved to partner with us to take back their streets. The men and women of DEA remain steadfast in our commitment to this endeavor.”
U. S. Attorney Letten stated: “Today, as the result of the outstanding work of the men and women of federal enforcement and our partners in the New Orleans Police Department and the District Attorney’s Office, yet another powerful blow has been made against an organization whose members are alleged to have committed murder and violence against our community. My deepest gratitude goes to the dedicated members of our own office, together with special agents of the FBI and ATF, along with DEA and the Marshals Service.”
Mike Anderson, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s New Orleans Field Office, added: “This investigation is a clear reflection of the FBI’s enhanced commitment to address localized violent street gangs, in partnership with our federal, state and local law enforcement counterparts. Accordingly, such criminal activity will remain a top investigative priority.”
Phil Durham, Special Agent in Charge of ATF, stated: “ATF’s primary goal is to work alongside our other law enforcement partners to reduce the number of homicides and other violent crimes committed with firearms. This joint effort clearly illustrates our commitment of the federal, state and local law enforcement agencies to making our communities safer.”
The indictment of these subjects is merely a charge. Guilt of the named defendants must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt in an appropriate court of law.
This indictment is the culmination of a long federal grand jury investigation that was conducted with the assistance of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the United States Marshals Service, the New Orleans Police Department, the New Orleans District Attorney’s Office, and the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Louisiana.Parents and children are encouraged to educate themselves about the dangers of drugs by visiting DEA’s interactive websites at www.JustThinkTwice.com, www.GetSmartAboutDrugs.com and www.dea.gov.