Former Texas Mexican Mafia Free World General Sentenced to Life in Federal Prison for Extortion Conspiracy
In San Antonio this afternoon, a federal judge sentenced 54-year-old Raul Ramos (aka “Alto,” “Naranjo,” “GQ”) to life in federal prison for his leadership role in a conspiracy to extort money from drug traffickers operating in their territory without permission, announced U.S. Attorney John Bash, FBI Special Agent in Charge Christopher Combs, San Antonio Division.
In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Judge Xavier Rodriguez ordered that Ramos pay a monetary judgement in the amount of $275,500 representing a portion of the profits derived from the criminal scheme.
On May 2, 2018, Ramos pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit extortion, one count of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, and one count of prohibited person in possession of a firearm.
According to court records, Ramos assumed the rank of Texas Mexican Mafia (TMM) Free World General based in San Antonio on or before January 1, 2015. The TMM leadership controls and directs collection of the drug tax. All members who participate in the collection of the tax, and the leaders who direct them, understand and agree that drug dealers are not permitted to sell drugs without paying the tax. Dealers have no choice; payment of the tax is mandatory and this rule is enforced through violence.
Once a drug dealer is identified, this information is passed up to the leadership. The leadership will make an effort to confirm this information, usually through a purchase from the drug dealer. If the information is confirmed, TMM soldiers are instructed to visit the drug dealer. If the dealer denies dealing in TMM territory without permission he is ordered to pay more. If the dealer refuses, he usually is robbed and beaten immediately. If the first visit does not convince the dealer to comply, the second visit will be a “door kick.” The front door is kicked in, armed gang members storm the home, all occupants are beaten and sometimes tied up, and anything of value is taken such as narcotics, jewelry, electronics, guns, and automobiles. After a “door kick,” all dealers begin paying the tax.
This prosecution has resulted in 37 convictions of members and associates of the Texas Mexican Mafia; 21 of which have resulted in sentences ranging from 63 months to life in federal prison. Sixteen (16) defendants are awaiting sentencing.
“Dismantling violent gangs is a continuing priority for the FBI. We share a long commitment with our law enforcement partners to address the dangerous threat facing our communities. Today's sentence should send a clear message to those who are involved in gang related enterprises - we will not tolerate the violence, fear and intimidation you inflict on our neighborhoods,” stated FBI Special Agent in Charge Combs.
This federal indictment stems from an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation conducted by the FBI, New Braunfels Police Department, Texas Department of Public Safety and the San Antonio Police Department. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) assisted in this investigation.
The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking, weapons trafficking and money laundering operations, and those primarily responsible for the nation’s illegal drug supply.