MS-13 Gang Leader Sentenced to Life in Prison for Racketeering Charges Including the Murder of 16-Year-Old Victim in Alley Pond Park in Queens
An indictment was unsealed today in federal court in Brooklyn charging three alleged members of the Real Ryte set of the Bloods street gang with crimes related to their participation in acts of violence, including the attempted murder of a gang rival that left an unintended target with gunshot wounds. Specifically, Dajahn McBean, Semaj Smith and Mark Waiters are charged with conspiring to commit murder in-aid-of their racketeering enterprise, attempted murder and assault in-aid-of racketeering, and using firearms in furtherance of the attempted murder and assault. These crimes stemmed from an internecine gang war with the Breadgang set of the Bloods. Smith was arrested this morning and will be arraigned via videoconference before United States Magistrate Judge James Orenstein this afternoon. Waiters and McBean are in custody and will be arraigned on a later date.
Seth DuCharme, Acting 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 Dermot F. Shea, Commissioner, New York City Police Department (NYPD), announced the indictment.
“The Real Rytes allegedly engaged in extreme acts of violence that threatened the safety of our community and, in one instance, resulted in serious injury to a bystander,” stated Acting United States Attorney DuCharme. “This Office and our law enforcement partners will continue to work hard to address the problem of gun violence in our neighborhoods, and we will prosecute to the fullest extent of the law gang members who endeavor to use our streets as battlefields.” Mr. DuCharme expressed his grateful appreciation to the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision for its assistance with the investigation.
“The alleged behavior of these individuals has now landed them in federal custody and, if convicted, they’re in for a long stay,” stated FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Sweeney. “To others anywhere in this city who are engaging in violent acts and illegally carrying weapons in our neighborhoods, pay attention: the FBI/NYPD Safe Streets Task Force is fully engaged with our partners, and we will utilize any federal law available to protect our community. The penalties for breaking those federal laws are appropriately severe.”
According to the indictment and public court documents, the Real Ryte set of the Bloods street gang operated in Brooklyn and elsewhere. Real Ryte members were active on social media and often appended the name of the gang to their usernames, used the #RealRyte hashtag on their posts and also wore clothing and jewelry with the Real Ryte gang’s double “R” logo on it. Between 2015 and 2017, Real Ryte was feuding with a rival set of the Bloods known as the Breadgang, whose members also operated in Brooklyn. The feud led to a series of violent confrontations between the two gangs, and the defendants and their co-conspirators sought to retaliate against the Breadgang for the December 19, 2015 slaying of Real Ryte member Sean Peart by shooting and killing Breadgang members at any opportunity. On January 3, 2017, the defendants learned that a Breadgang member could be found at a specific location in the vicinity of Essex Street and Hester Street in lower Manhattan. Smith and Waiters traveled to the location and shot an innocent person sitting in his car whom they mistook for their intended target. The victim was seriously injured, but survived the shooting.
The charges in the indictment are allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted of discharging a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, each of the defendants faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years’ and up to life imprisonment, which would run consecutively to any other sentence imposed. The murder conspiracy and attempted murder in-aid-of racketeering charges each carry a sentence of up to 10 years’ imprisonment, and the assault in-aid-of racketeering charge carries a sentence of up to 20 years’ imprisonment.
The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Organized Crime and Gangs Section. Assistant United States Attorneys Jennifer M. Sasso, Drew G. Rolle and Nicholas J. Moscow are in charge of the prosecution.
DAJAHN MCBEAN (also known as “Jeezy Mula”)
Brooklyn, New York
SEMAJ SMITH (also known as “Bam Bam” and “Real Ryte Sport”)
Brooklyn, New York
MARK WAITERS (also known as “Telly”)
Brooklyn, New York
E.D.N.Y. Docket No.: 20-CR-260 (ARR)
United States Attorney’s Office