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Press Release

Chelsea Gang Member Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Massachusetts
Defendant admitted to attempting to murder rival gang member and hiding evidence from gang-related shooting

BOSTON – An East Side Money Gang (ESMG) member, known as “Superbad,” was sentenced yesterday in federal court in Boston for racketeering and drug trafficking charges.


Josue Rodriguez, a/k/a “SB,” a/k/a “Superbad,” 20, of Chelsea, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns to 10 years in prison and five years of supervised release.  In June 2017, Rodriguez pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to conduct enterprise affairs through a pattern of racketeering activity, commonly known as RICO, and one count of conspiracy to distribute cocaine and cocaine base. 


Rodriguez is a member of the ESMG, a Chelsea-based street gang, which uses violence to further its criminal activities and enforce its internal rules.  Specifically, ESMG uses violence to protect its members/associates, target rival gang members/associates and intimidate potential witnesses. 


Rodriguez admitted that on July 5, 2015, he ambushed a rival gang member who was walking down the street, shooting at him with a semi-automatic pistol, but did not hit him.  On March 29, 2016, Rodriguez and another ESMG member agreed to provide a .22 caliber revolver to a third ESMG member so he could “spank” with it – meaning that he could use it against rivals of ESMG.  On April 3, 2016, the third gang member used the revolver to attempt to murder two men believed to be members/associates of a rival gang.  One of the targets was shot but not killed.


On May 26, 2016, Rodriguez attempted to hide the .38 caliber Smith and Wesson revolver used in a shooting, as well as spent and live shells, after another ESMG member/associate attempted to shoot a rival gang member.


The East Side Money gang was also involved in drug trafficking, including cocaine, cocaine base (crack) and heroin.  Rodriguez conspired with other gang members and associates to distribute at least one kilogram of cocaine base.  Rodriguez further admitted that he stored drugs at, and distributed drugs from, his home in Chelsea, and that the gang maintained at least one firearm at the location.


Rodriguez is one of 53 defendants indicted in June 2016 on federal firearms and drug charges following an investigation into a network of street gangs that had created alliances to traffic weapons and drugs throughout Massachusetts and to generate violence against rival gang members. According to court documents, the defendants, who are leaders, members, and associates of the 18th Street Gang, East Side Money Gang and the Boylston Gang, were responsible for fueling a gun and drug pipeline across a number of cities and towns in eastern Massachusetts.  During the course of the investigation, over 70 firearms were seized.


Acting United States Attorney William D. Weinreb; Mickey D. Leadingham, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, Boston Field Division; Michael J. Ferguson, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration, New England Field Division; Matthew Etre, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; John Gibbons, U.S. Marshal for the District of Massachusetts; Maura Healey, Attorney General of Massachusetts; Colonel Richard D. McKeon, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police; Boston Police Commissioner William Evans; Chelsea Police Chief Brian Kyes; and Brockton Police Chief John Crowley made the announcement today.  The U.S. Attorney’s Office also acknowledges the assistance of the Suffolk and Middlesex County Sheriff Departments and the Malden, Revere and Everett Police Departments.  Weinreb’s Organized Crime and Gang Unit is prosecuting the case.

Updated October 30, 2017

Drug Trafficking