New Indictment in Federal RICO Case Targeting Crips Gang Adds Murder Charge Related to Previously Unsolved Homicide
LOS ANGELES – A federal grand jury has returned a new indictment in a racketeering case targeting the Five Deuce Broadway Gangster Crips (BGC) street gang that adds a murder charge stemming from a previously unsolved 2012 homicide, Acting United States Attorney Sandra R. Brown announced today.
The “second superseding indictment” charges BGC member Joshua Perez, also known as “Tiny Ange,” in the murder of 37-year-old William Sherman, who was killed after BGC gangsters mistakenly identified him as being part of a group that were members of a rival gang.
The new indictment also alleges that co-defendant Marquis Shaw, also known as “T-Loon,” participated in the attack that resulted in Sherman’s murder. Shaw also faces charges previously filed in the BGC case that allege he committed a 2003 murder of a non-gang member outside of the House of Blues in West Hollywood.
Perez, 26, and Shaw, 43, allegedly are prominent members of a BGC clique known as the Gremlin Riderz, a violent enforcement arm that acts as the gang’s hit squad, which includes enforcing discipline among the gang’s members and carrying out acts of retaliation against rival gangs.
The new charges in the indictment accuse Perez of committing murder in aid of racketeering and using a firearm in relation to a crime of violence that caused death. Each of these offenses carries a mandatory sentence of life without parole in federal prison.
The indictment alleges that Sherman was murdered during a May 10, 2012 incident in which BGC members were retaliating against a rival gang for the murder of a BGC member. BGC members traveled in a multi-vehicle convoy to a party being held by the rival gang, and fired at least 40 shots into a group of men who were walking to the party. Sherman was killed and two others were injured in the shooting. The victims were not members of the rival gang targeted by BGC. Prior to the second superseding indictment, no one had been charged in the killing.
The second superseding indictment returned by a federal grand jury on November 9 charges Perez, Shaw and five other BGC members with participating in a conspiracy to violate the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act. Members of the conspiracy allegedly engaged in murders, robberies, witness and informant intimidation, and narcotics sales.
The new indictment is the latest development in a case originally filed in 2014 against 72 members and associates of the BGC, a violent and primarily African-American gang that controls parts of South Los Angeles and downtown Los Angeles. Out of the 72 defendants originally charged in a 213-page RICO indictment, 64 defendants have pleaded guilty and one was convicted at trial. Many of those convicted have received lengthy prison sentences – including the leader of the BGC, who was sentenced to nearly 22 years in federal prison – and those defendants have been banned from living in BGC territory after they complete their prison terms.
After the filing of the original indictment in this case, federal and local law enforcement authorities continued to investigate the BGC, which included reexamining the 2012 attack that led to Sherman’s murder and developing new witnesses to that incident.
The seven defendants named in the second superseding indictment – the only defendants remaining in the BGC case – are scheduled to go on trial on February 6, 2018 before United States District Judge S. James Otero. Perez and Shaw each face mandatory terms of life in prison if convicted of the murder charges alleged in the indictment.
An indictment contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.
The investigation into the BGC was conducted by agents and officers with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Los Angeles Police Department. Considerable assistance was provided during this investigation by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, the Torrance Police Department, the Buena Park Police Department, the El Segundo Police Department, the San Bernardino Police Department and the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mack Jenkins, Chief of the Public Corruption and Civil Rights Section; Assistant United States Attorneys Max Shiner and Wilson Park of the Violent and Organized Crime Section; and Assistant United States Attorney Sheila Nagaraj of the Public Corruption and Civil Rights Section.