BOSTON – A Lynn man, who is allegedly a member of the Magnolia Street Steelers gang, was arrested today for drug trafficking in North Andover. The arrest marks the 44th individual charged in the multi-phase investigation dubbed "Operation Whiplash."
On Sept. 25, 2013, Tyrone Shepherd, a/k/a Pooh, 30, was indicted on charges of conspiracy to distribute cocaine base and four counts of distribution of cocaine base. Operation Whiplash was a wide-ranging FBI Gang Task Force investigation of several gangs in and around Lynn and Revere. Operation Whiplash is the successor investigation to Operation Melting Pot which, in 2010, resulted in 62 Lynn gang leaders, members, and associates of the Avenue King Crips, Bloods, Gangsta Disciples, Deuce Boyz/Soldiers, and Latin Kings being charged in federal and state court. More than 40 guns were seized.
The goal of Operation Whiplash was to target the gangs and gang members who remained in and around Lynn, before they were able to fully reconstitute and seize power in the vacuum created by Operation Melting Pot. Operation Whiplash has resulted in state and federal charges against 44 leaders, members and associates of the Money Over Broken Bitches (M.O.B.B.) street gang in Lynn, the Bloods in Revere, and other gangs. These individuals, including 27 federal defendants, face drug, firearms, and witness tampering charges. Operation Whiplash also resulted in the seizure of 16 firearms.
According to the detention affidavit filed today, Shepherd is a member of the MIC (Magnolia, Intervale and Columbia) Street Gang, also known as the Magnolia Street Steelers. Shepherd has a tattoo of the insignia of the Pittsburgh Steelers, which is also a symbol of the gang. On Sept. 25, 2013 the FBI issued an arrest warrant and offered a reward of $5,000 for information leading directly to his arrest.
If convicted, Shepherd faces a statutory mandatory minimum sentence of five years and a maximum of 40 years in prison; a mandatory minimum term of four years and up to a lifetime of supervised release; and a $5 million fine on the charge of conspiracy to distribute cocaine base. If convicted on the charge of distribution of cocaine base, Shepherd faces a maximum of 20 years in prison, a mandatory minimum term of three years and up to a lifetime of supervised release; and a $1 million fine.
United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz; Vincent B. Lisi, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; Colonel Timothy P. Alben of the Massachusetts State Police; Essex County District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett, and Chief Kenneth L. Santoro of the Lynn Police Department, made the announcement today. Operation Whiplash was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, Boston Field Division, Essex Sheriff’s Office, Revere Police Department, Chelsea Police Department, North Andover Police Department, Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office, and the Massachusetts Department of Corrections. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Peter Levitt and Timothy A. Moran of Ortiz’s Strike Force Unit.
The details contained in the indictment are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
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