Former Member of Boston Latin Kings Chapter Pleads Guilty to Racketeering Conspiracy
BOSTON – A member of the Massachusetts Almighty Latin King and Queen Nation (Latin Kings) pleaded guilty on Tuesday, Oct. 28, 2021 to racketeering charges.
Robert Lara, a/k/a “King Rizz,” 29, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to conduct enterprise affairs through a pattern of racketeering activity, more commonly referred to as RICO conspiracy. U.S. Senior District Court Judge Rya W. Zobel scheduled sentencing for Jan. 25, 2022.
The Latin Kings are a violent criminal enterprise comprised of thousands of members across the United States. The Latin Kings adhere to a national manifesto, employ an internal judiciary and use a sophisticated system of communication to maintain the hierarchy of the organization. As alleged in court documents, the gang uses drug distribution to generate revenue, and engages in violence against witnesses and rival gangs to further its influence and to protect its turf.
Named for its origin on Devon Street in Boston, the Devon Street Kings, or D5K, Chapter of the Latin Kings, included approximately a dozen members. The Devon Street Kings, in turn, reported to the Massachusetts State Leadership of the Latin Kings, providing information, structure, funds and other resources to further the Latin Kings goals and directives in the state. Lara admitted to attending numerous meetings of the gang, contributing to its joint account known as the “fundo” and participating in a violent assault of another member at a hotel in the Boston area, which was imposed as punishment for violating the rules of the gang.
In December 2019, a federal grand jury returned an indictment alleging racketeering conspiracy, drug conspiracy and firearms charges against 62 leaders, members and associates of the Latin Kings. Lara is the 54th defendant to plead guilty in the case.
The RICO conspiracy charge provides for a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Acting United States Attorney Nathaniel R. Mendell; Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division; Commissioner Carol Mici of the Massachusetts Department of Correction; and New Bedford Police Chief Joseph C. Cordeiro made the announcement. Valuable assistance was also provided by the FBI North Shore Gang Task Force and the Bristol County and Suffolk County District Attorney’s Offices. Assistant U.S. Attorney Philip A. Mallard of Mendell’s Organized Crime and Gang Unit is prosecuting the case.
This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.
The details contained in the charging documents are allegations. The remaining defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.