Aryan Brotherhood of Texas Members/Associates Convicted in Methamphetamine Distribution Conspiracy
FORT WORTH, Texas — Following a four-day trial before U.S. District Judge John McBryde, late yesterday a federal jury convicted seven defendants, including members and associates of the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas prison gang, for their roles in a methamphetamine distribution conspiracy that operated in north Texas from approximately January 2014 to April 2016. In addition, between April and August 2016, 80 defendants charged in drug conspiracy cases related to this one have pleaded guilty. U.S. Attorney John Parker of the Northern District of Texas made today’s announcement.
Each of the below-listed defendants was convicted on one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine.
Charles Ben Bounds, a/k/a “Pretty Boy,” 31, of Fort Worth, Texas
Billy Fred Gentry, a/k/a “Fred Gentry,” 30, of Fort Worth, Texas
Kevin Kyle Killough, a/k/a “Kilo,” 29, of Fort Worth, Texas
Billy Ray Skaggs, 48, of Brownwood, Texas
Michael Clay Heaslet, a/k/a “Whisper,” 38, of Fort Worth, Texas
Nicole Cynthia Herrera, a/k/a “Nikki Single,” 21, of Dallas, Texas
Trae Short, a/k/a “Twig,” 31, of Dallas, Texas
One defendant, James Marcus Laxson, was acquitted.
The penalty for the offense is not less than five years or more than 40 years in federal prison and a $5 million fine. The defendants are scheduled be sentenced by Judge McBryde in February 2017.
The government presented evidence at trial that some of the defendants were members, including ranking members, or associates, of the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas. The government presented further evidence identifying the defendants and the role of each in the conspiracy. Text messages from some defendants’ phones, and recordings of phone calls from jail were introduced that detailed their methamphetamine trafficking.
The Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Fort Worth Police Department investigated. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Shawn Smith and Frank Gatto are prosecuting the case.
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