Member of O.B.H. Sentenced to & 7½ Years for Attempting to Intimidate Witness During 2019 Trial That Sent Fellow Gang Members to Prison
PHILADELPHIA – Acting United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Charles Salley, a/k/a “Dark Lo,” a/k/a “Ron Harvey,” 39, of Philadelphia, PA, was sentenced to seven and a half years in prison, one years of supervised release, and was ordered to pay a $10,000 fine by United States District Court Judge Mark A. Kearney for threatening a cooperating witness during a federal trial in November 2019.
Salley, a well-known Philadelphia-based rapper and member of the violent street gang “O.B.H.” (or “Original Block Hustlaz”), mailed a menacing letter to a witness on the eve of the witness’ testimony during a federal trial in which Salley’s O.B.H. associates were charged with drug trafficking and weapons possession. The letter threatened violence against the witness and the witness’ girlfriend if the witness told the truth during his testimony. Salley was then present in the courtroom during the course of the 2019 trial, including on the day of the witness’ scheduled testimony. Later that day, following the witness’ testimony, Salley was arrested at his home in Delaware and charged with witness tampering for sending the letter. Ultimately, the O.B.H. defendants were all convicted after trial and sentenced to lengthy prison terms. Salley will now join them.
“Witness intimidation has no place in the criminal justice system and will be dealt with immediately so as to deter anyone else who might consider acting so reprehensibly,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Williams. “If you attempt to intimidate a federal witness, you will face federal charges of your own.”
“Imagine agreeing to be a federal witness against members of a violent drug gang and the day before you take the stand, one of their buddies threatens you and yours,” said Michael J. Driscoll, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Philadelphia Division. “This is exactly the type of thing our witness tampering laws are designed to prevent, as our justice system depends on witnesses being willing to share what they know. The FBI simply will not permit them to be targeted like this, in an attempt to subvert the rule of law. Charles Salley was hoping to keep his OBH associates out of prison. Instead, he finds himself behind bars as well, for quite some time.”
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Justin Ashenfelter.