News and Press Releases

Statement Of U.S. Attorney Daniel G. Bogden In Nevada Hells Angels Prosecution

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 11, 2006

Las Vegas, Nev. – Today, the United States Attorney's Office concluded plea negotiations resolving the trial phase of a major prosecution stemming from the violent assaults and homicides that occurred in Harrah's Hotel and Casino in Laughlin, Nevada, on April 27, 2002. This office brought federal criminal charges based on substantial evidence that members of the Hell's Angels, operating as part of a racketeering enterprise pursuant to a conspiracy, caused the violent melee. The plea agreement required guilty pleas, entered this afternoon, by the six Hell's Angels members who directly participated in the violent assaults. The agreement also resulted in dismissal of charges against the remaining defendants. The United States Attorney's Office worked in conjunction with the Clark County District Attorney's Office to ensure that the plea agreement encompassed the full scope of gang-related conduct. The prosecution reflected this office's continuing commitment to ensure public safety and prosecute criminal gangs.

In order to convict the defendants of the charges brought in this case, federal law required the prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the Hell's Angels operated as an enterprise engaged in racketeering activity. During trial, the District Court suppressed key witness testimony on that issue as a result of what the Court characterized as a discovery violation. The government argued at trial that neither the law nor the facts permitted such suppression. The government could not appeal the District Court's decision. As a result, the government faced the prospect of sending the case to the jury with substantially less than all of the evidence against the defendants that it possessed. The government concluded under the circumstances that the guilty pleas by the six most active and culpable participants in the crime would best serve justice and the public interest.

This Office appreciates the work of the Clark County District Attorney's Office in prosecuting and reaching a conclusion in this case, and the outstanding cooperation and work of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the trial prosecutors, Assistant United States Attorneys Eric Johnson and Andrew Duncan.

Guilty Pleas

Defendant Charge Plea Details

  • Rodney Cox, Violent Crime in Aid of Racketeering; Admits to being member of an association in fact enterprise; Admits that on 4/27/02, at 2:16 am at Harrah's Laughlin, he used a wrench to strike Benjamin Silva. Plea memo calls for binding 30-month sentence.
  • Maurice Eunice, Violent Crime in Aid of Racketeering; Admits to being member of an association in fact enterprise; Admits that on 4/27/02, at 2:16 am at Harrah's Laughlin, he fired a handgun at and struck Enrique Munoz. Plea memo calls for binding 30-month sentence.
  • Raymond Foakes, Violent Crime in Aid of Racketeering; Admits to being member of an association in fact enterprise; Admits that on 4/27/02, at 2:16 am at Harrah's Laughlin, he kicked an unknown individual in a violent altercation. Plea memo calls for binding 21-month sentence.
  • James Hannigan, Violent Crime in Aid of Racketeering; Admits to being member of an association in fact enterprise; Admits that on 4/27/02, at 2:16 am at Harrah's Laughlin, he stabbed Roger Pinney during a violent altercation with Pinney and Benjamin Leyva. Plea memo calls for binding 30-month sentence.
  • Dale Leedom, Violent Crime in Aid of Racketeering; Admits to being member of an association in fact enterprise; Admits that on 4/27/02, at 2:16 am at Harrah's Laughlin, he stabbed Benjamin Leyva during a violent altercation. Plea memo calls for binding 27-month sentence.
  • Calvin Schaefer, Violent Crime in Aid of Racketeering; Admits to being member of an association in fact enterprise; Admits that on 4/27/02, at 2:16 am at Harrah's Laughlin, during a violent altercation with Richard Nolan and Benjamin Leyva, he fired a handgun at and struck Richard Nolan. Plea memo calls for binding 51-month sentence.

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