News

BGF Commander and Gang Member Sentenced to Prison for Participating in a Racketeering Conspiracy

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 20, 2011

Baltimore, Maryland - U.S. District Judge William D. Quarles, Jr. sentenced Todd Duncan, a/k/a Donnie, age 36, of Baltimore, Maryland, today to 14 years in prison, followed by five years of supervised release, for conspiracy to conduct and participate in the activities of the Black Guerilla Family (BGF), a racketeering enterprise. Yesterday, Judge Quarles sentenced Davon McFadden,a/k/a Ben, age 24, of Baltimore, to five years in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, on the same charge.

The sentences were announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Ava Cooper-Davis of the Drug Enforcement Administration - Washington Field Division; Baltimore Police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III; Baltimore City State’s Attorney Gregg L. Bernstein; and Secretary Gary D. Maynard of the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.

According to their plea agreements, the Black Guerilla Family (BGF), is a nationwide gang operating in prison facilities and major cities throughout the United States. Founded in California in the 1960s and introduced into the Maryland correctional system in the mid 1990s, BGF in Maryland is increasingly active on the streets of Baltimore City, as well as in various prison facilities in Maryland.

According to their plea agreements, BGF conducts its affairs through a pattern of criminal activity, including: narcotics trafficking, robbery; extortion; bribery; retaliation against a witness or informant; money laundering; and commercial robbery. BGF members arrange to have drugs, tobacco, cell phones, food and other contraband smuggled into Maryland prison facilities, sometimes recruiting and paying employees of prison facilities, including corrections officers, to assist BGF and its members in the smuggling of contraband, the collection of intelligence and in the concealment of BGF's criminal activities. BGF members use violence and threats of violence to coerce incarcerated persons to pay protection money to BGF, to enforce the BGF code of conduct, and to increase their control of the Baltimore City drug trade and the underground "prison economy" in Maryland correctional facilities.

According to their plea agreements, from 2006 through June 2010, Duncan and McFadden were members of BGF and participated in the drug trafficking activities of the gang. Specifically, Duncan was the overall city-wide commander of the BGF and at times acted as a source of supply of heroin to members of the BGF, including McFadden; operated street level heroin shops; utilized individuals to store, process and sell heroin for his enrichment and for the enrichment of BGF; and arranged for the sale of bulk quantities of heroin to various wholesale customers. In addition, as the city-wide commander of the BGF Duncan attended meetings of high-ranking members of the BGF at locations in and around Baltimore City. Discussed during these meetings were gang activities, including drug trafficking, money laundering, commercial robberies and retaliation against rival gangs and BGF members who broke protocol. As the city-wide commander, Duncan had ultimate authority to authorize those actions.

McFadden admits that he also participated in the gang’s drug trafficking activities and on March 27, 2010, during an intercepted telephone conversation, was overheard directing a BGF “commander” to collect $25 from each BGF member under the “commander’s” control, which McFadden advised he would then collect and forward the funds to BGF’s central “treasury.”

Duconze Chambers, a/k/a Ducon and Dookie, age 36, of Baltimore also pleaded guilty to the racketeering conspiracy and is awaiting sentencing. The charges against the remaining 12 defendants charged in the racketeering indictment are pending. Trial is scheduled May 2, 2011.

Mr. Rosenstein praised the DEA; Baltimore City Police Department; Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office; and the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services for their work in this investigation and prosecution; as well as the Baltimore County Police Department; the U.S. Marshals Service; and the Internal Revenue Service - Criminal Investigation, Washington D.C. Field Office, for their assistance.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein thanked Baltimore City Assistant State’s Attorneys Antonio Gioia, Miabeth Marosy and Rebecca Cox, for their work in the investigation and prosecution, and Assistant United States Attorneys James T. Wallner and Clinton J. Fuchs, who prosecuted this Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force case.

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