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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Texas

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Third Defendant Captured in New Orleans Overnight in Connection with Racketeering Schemes that Involved the Attempted Capital Murder of State District Court Judge Julie Kocurek

Shortly before midnight, federal and state authorities arrested 26-year-old Marcellus Antoine Burgin of Cypress, TX, without incident in New Orleans, LA.  Burgin, 28-year-old Chimene Hamilton Onyeri of Houston, and 24-year-old Rasul Kareem Scott of Marrera, LA, are all charged in a federal grand jury indictment unsealed in Austin on Friday for their roles in fraud and racketeering schemes that involved the attempted capital murder of State District Court Judge Julie Kocurek in November of last year. 

On September 22, 2016, Burgin led federal agents on a car chase in Southwest Houston that resulted in a car accident and a foot chase. Burgin was able to escape apprehension that day and has been a fugitive ever since. 

Burgin is expected to have his initial appearance today in New Orleans.  Scott remains in federal custody in Louisiana.  Both are expected to be transferred to the Austin Division of the Western District of Texas for yet-to-be-scheduled court proceedings.  Onyeri remains in federal custody pending his detention hearing set for 9:00am on October 6, 2016, before United States Magistrate Judge Mark Lane in Austin.

The indictment alleges that from January 2012 to November 2015, Onyeri and others carried out various fraudulent schemes for financial gain in Austin, Houston, the state of Louisiana and surrounding areas.  The racketeering enterprise is alleged to have engaged in mail fraud, bribery of a public official, wire fraud, document fraud, access device fraud and money laundering as well as offenses involving murder. 

According to the indictment, when the existence of the criminal enterprise was threatened, the defendants responded with violence.  The indictment alleges that on the night of November 6, 2015, the defendants attempted to murder State District Court Judge Julie Kocurek, whom Onyeri believed was going to sentence him to prison, by shooting Judge Kocurek while she sat in her car outside her home in Austin.  As a result of the incident, Kocurek suffered serious bodily injury from multiple gunshots and resulting shrapnel.

This case is being investigated by the FBI, IRS-Criminal Investigation, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, United States Secret Service, Austin Police Department and the Travis County District Attorney’s Office.  The 14th Judicial District Attorney’s Office in (Calcasieu Parish) Lake Charles, Louisiana; Fort Bend County District Attorney’s Office; United States Attorney’s Offices for the Southern District of Texas and the Eastern District of Louisiana; the United States Marshals Service; Travis County Sheriff’s Office; and, the Houston Police Department have also provided valuable assistance during this investigation.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Gregg N. Sofer and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Dayna Blazey are prosecuting this case on behalf of the Government.

An indictment is merely a charge and should not be considered as evidence of guilt.  The defendants are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

Financial Fraud
Violent Crimes
Updated September 27, 2016