Leader of White Supremacist Group Pleads Guilty to Conspiring to Make Death Threats Against Journalist
Earlier today, Leroy Scott, a resident of Queens, pled guilty at the federal courthouse in Central Islip, New York, to armed bank robbery and a related firearms possession charge. When sentenced, Scott faces up to 25 years’ imprisonment for the bank robbery and a minimum of seven years’ imprisonment and up to life imprisonment for the firearms charge.
Richard P. Donoghue, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, William F. Sweeney, Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI), and Patrick J. Ryder, Commissioner, Nassau County Police Department (NCPD), announced the guilty plea.
According to court filings and prior public proceedings in the case, on August 21, 2017, Scott acted as a lookout for a co-conspirator, Pedro Benitez, who entered the Bridgehampton Savings Bank in Hewlett, New York, ordered customers and employees to the floor at gunpoint and demanded money from bank employees. Another co-conspirator, Troy Tavares, waited outside in a vehicle. Benitez fled the bank with over $12,000 and Tavares drove Benitez to a nearby location where they met up with Scott and another co-conspirator to split the proceeds. At his guilty plea proceeding, Scott admitted that he had also participated in two additional robberies that the crew committed during the summer of 2017, both in Nassau County. In each of those robberies, Scott had assisted in the planning and acted as a lookout for Benitez. In total, the robbery crew stole over $70,000 from four banks between July and September of 2017.
Scott is the last of the co-defendants in this bank robbery crew to plead guilty in this case. The government’s case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Michael Maffei.
Far Rockaway, New York
E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 17-CR-572 (S-1) (JS)
United States Attorney’s Office