Federal Jury Convicts Two North Park Gang Members of Racketeering Conspiracy Involving Sex Trafficking of Minors and Adults
Assistant U. S. Attorney Alessandra Serano (619) 546-8104 or Joseph Orabona (619) 546-7951
NEWS RELEASE SUMMARY – July 14, 2016
SAN DIEGO, CA – Two members of the Black Mob/Skanless Enterprise which consisted of two North Park-based criminal street gangs were convicted by a federal jury yesterday afternoon of participating in a racketeering enterprise involving sex trafficking of minors and adults as well as robbery and drug sales.
The jury found defendants Robert “Pimpsy” Banks III and Tony “Lil’ Play Doh” Brown guilty of Conspiracy to Conduct Enterprise Affairs Through a Pattern of Racketeering Activity at the conclusion of a two plus week trial and about ten hours of deliberations. The jury also found both Brown and Banks guilty of three counts of sex trafficking of minors and one count of transportation of a minor for prostitution. U.S. District Judge John A. Houston set sentencing for October 3, 2016 at 8:30 a.m. The defendants face up to twenty years in prison for each count.
The two convicted defendants were arrested and charged in 2014 as part of a larger investigation involving 22 other defendants. Twenty-two have pleaded guilty.
“Sex trafficking is a crime that causes devastating long-term effects for victims,” said U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy. “Because of today’s verdicts, and the numerous guilty pleas that preceded them, these gang members will no longer be able to subject women and girls to the pain, humiliation and suffering associated with sex trafficking. Unfortunately, more gangs are expanding from traditional pursuits like drug dealing into this lucrative business. These gangsters are preying upon our youth, and we are using every law enforcement resource to keep our children and our communities safe from these predators.”
The federal racketeering statute known as “RICO” historically has been used to prosecute mobsters and organized crime, but federal prosecutors have been using the statute on street gangs in recent years because the gangs are increasingly acting as organized criminal enterprises especially in sex trafficking and prostitution.
During this trial, prosecutors set out to show the jury how the defendants worked together as a criminal enterprise to sex traffic multiple women including four 15 and 16 year old minors, and to commit drug sales and a robbery on behalf of the Black Mob/Skanless Enterprise.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Alessandra P. Serano and Joseph J.M. Orabona. These guilty verdicts are the fruit of the collaborative work by the San Diego Police Department and the FBI’s Innocence Lost Task Force.
DEFENDANTS Case Number: 13CR4510-JAH
Robert “Pimpsy” Banks III Age: 33 San Diego, CA
Tony “Lil Play Doh” Brown Age: 33 Tolleson, Arizona
SUMMARY OF CHARGES
Conspiracy to Conduct Enterprise Affairs Through a Pattern of Racketeering Activity, in violation of Title 18, U.S.C. Section 1962 (d) – Maximum Penalties: 20 years in Prison
Sex Trafficking of Children - Maximum Penalties: 20 years in Prison, Sex Offender Registration
Transportation of a Minor for Prostitution - Maximum Penalties: 20 years in Prison, Sex Offender Registration
San Diego Police Department
Federal Bureau of Investigation