Two PDL Bloods Gang Members Sentenced to a Total of More than 33 Years in Prison for Federal Racketeering Conspiracy
Baltimore, Maryland – U.S. District Judge William D. Quarles, Jr. sentenced Avon Banks, age 23, and Quincy Williams, age 21, both of Baltimore, today to 262 months in prison, and 121 months in prison, respectively, each followed by five years of supervised release, for conspiracy to conduct and participate in the racketeering enterprise activities of the Pasadena Denver Lanes Bloods gang (PDL Bloods). Judge Quarles enhanced Banks’ sentence upon finding that he was a career offender based on three prior drug convictions.
The sentence was announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Baltimore City State’s Attorney Patricia C. Jessamy; Special Agent in Charge Theresa R. Stoop of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives - Baltimore Field Division; and Baltimore Police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III.
According to their plea agreements, Banks and Williams are members of PDL Bloods, a violent gang with members operating in Baltimore. PDL Bloods originated from a street gang known as “the Bloods” that was formed in Los Angeles, California in the early 1970s. As time passed, the Bloods spread to other locations and broke into individual “sets.” One such Bloods set based in southern California was called Pasadena Denver Lanes. The PDL Bloods gang members conspired to engage in criminal activity, including attempted murders, assaults, robberies and drug trafficking, from at least January 2008 to the present.
Banks and Williams sold heroin and crack cocaine and participated in gang sanctions and other violence against PDL members, rival gang members, and random victims. Banks and Williams were recorded on numerous wiretap calls discussing their involvement in drug trafficking and gang-related activities. Banks used firearms to rob victims and businesses in Maryland, obtaining money, jewelry, firearms, and narcotics, and was responsible for the distribution of at least two pounds of heroin and at least a pound of crack cocaine. Williams was responsible for the distribution of between a pound and three pounds of crack cocaine and approximately a quarter pound of heroin during the course of this racketeering conspiracy.
United States Attorney Rosenstein and Baltimore City State’s Attorney Jessamy expressed their appreciation to Secretary Gary D. Maynard and the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services for their assistance in the gang investigation.
In a related case, Judge Quarles sentenced Banks to 92 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, to be served concurrent to the racketeering sentence, for illegal possession of a gun. According to Bank’s plea agreement in that case, on November 27, 2007, Banks was a passenger in a vehicle that had been pulled over by members of the Baltimore Police Department. As officers approached the vehicle, Banks appeared to be securing his waistband area. Banks began to open the door and officers commanded him to stand still. After Banks continued to move his hands in his waist band area as if trying to secure something, officers ordered Banks to the ground and conducted a pat-down. During the patdown, officers recovered from Banks’ waist area a black semi-automatic 9mm handgun loaded with a magazine and 17 bullets. Further investigation showed that the firearm was stolen. Due to prior felony convictions, Banks was prohibited from possessing a firearm.
Banks is currently in state custody on unrelated state charges and will begin serving his federal sentence at the conclusion of any state proceedings.
Mr. Rosenstein and Mrs. Jessamy thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Kwame J. Manley and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Traci Robinson, a cross-designated Baltimore City Assistant State’s Attorney assigned to EXILE cases, who prosecuted the RICO conspiracy case, and Baltimore City Assistant State’s Attorneys Staci Pipkin and Brandis Marsh, who assisted in the prosecution.