News and Press Releases

Gangster Disciple Street Gang Member Sentenced to More than 24 Years in Federal Prison

January 18, 2012

Tampa, Florida - U.S. Attorney Robert E. O'Neill announces that U.S. District Judge James S. Moody, Jr. today sentenced James Jason Riani, a/k/a “Wicked”, (32, Spring Hill) to 24 years and 7 months in federal prison for possession with intent to distribute Methamphetamine and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. This sentence was ordered to be served consecutive to a recent 5-year Florida prison sentence which Riani received for battery on another prison inmate. The court also ordered Riani to forfeit his firearms and ammunition.

Riani pled guilty on October 7, 2011.

According to court documents, in September 2010 Riani was arrested for possession of a stolen motorcycle by Hernando County Sheriffs Office detectives. Prior to the arrest, Riani attempted to pull a loaded firearm. He was later found to be in possession of two other handguns, a broken down shotgun and a quantity of methamphetamine. Riani is a member of the Gangster Disciple street gang, which he joined while serving an earlier prison sentence.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Hernando County Sheriffs Office. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Walter E. Furr, III.

It is another case prosecuted as a part of the Department of Justice’s “Project Safe Neighborhoods” program - a nationwide, gun-violence reduction strategy led by ATF. United States Attorney Robert E. O’Neill, along with Virginia O’Brien, Special Agent in Charge, ATF, is coordinating the Project Safe Neighborhoods effort here in the Middle District of Florida in cooperation with federal, state, and local law enforcement officials.









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