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Friday, 1 March 2013

Twenty-five-year old Jujhar Singh Khun-Khun of Surrey has been charged with first-degree murder and attempted murder.

Posted On 22:58 by Reporters 0 comments

one of three gangsters charged with the 2011 murder of Red Scorpion Jonathan Bacon in Kelowna.

Twenty-five-year old Jujhar Singh Khun-Khun of Surrey has been charged with first-degree murder and attempted murder. Jason Thomas McBride, 37, and Michael Jones are also charged. All three are reported to have connections with the late Sukh Dhak, who had been killed in a gang shooting in Vancouver this past fall.

Bacon and several associates were shot at during a busy day in Kelowna's downtown area in August 2011.

The 2011 shooting killed Bacon and injured those he was with. No passersby were injured, but the boldness of the hit reverberated throughout the province.

"This violent incident rocked the city of Kelowna in an act so brazen it might have been mistaken for an action movie," said Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit Chief Supt. Dan Malo during a news conference to announce the arrests. "We were all appalled by the public nature of this reckless act."

According to Malo, since Bacon's death, investigators had been working around the clock to tie people to the case, culminating in Monday's announcement.

"We've had over 50 investigators on this case (at any given time)," said Malo.

All three suspects are known to police and have ties to various criminal organizations throughout the province.

"All three individuals charged have in the past been associate to several different groups," said Malo, noting that it would be difficult to describe any of them as belonging to just one group.

Khun-Khun has been shot at twice in the past, once in September 2011 and again last month while out with other gang associates.

He also has a number of incidents on his record, including having been arrested in Abbotsford in relation to a shooting and having been pulled over in August 2011 with a cache of drugs and $1,700. In 2007 Khun-Khun was also convicted of kidnapping following an incident that involved him holding a person hostage at gunpoint for several hours.

"In my many years investigating gangs and criminal cases, the one thing that always stands out is that organized crime groups do attract broken people," said Malo. "They're looking for connections, love and acceptance. They demand loyalty and give little in return."

Gilbert Spiller self-admitted "general" in the Black P Stone Nation

Posted On 22:44 by Reporters 0 comments

A high-ranking gang member previously convicted for his role in a fatal drive-by shooting was sentenced to 20 years in prison Wednesday for dealing drugs and guns in the South Shore neighborhood.

U.S. District Judge Charles Kocoras sentenced Gilbert Spiller to 20 years in federal prison Wednesday, according to the U.S. Attorney's office.

Spiller, 37, a self-admitted "general" in the Black P Stone Nation, pleaded guilty in September 2012 to two counts of selling crack cocaine and one count of illegally selling a firearm, according to a statement from federal prosecutors.

He admitted selling 62.2 grams of crack cocaine on July 13, 2011, and 59.2 grams of crack on July 21, 2011, to an informant in the 7800 block of South Kingston — an area he and his associates called "Terror Town," the U.S. Attorney's office said.

Spiller also sold the same informant a .40 caliber handgun on Oct. 18, 2011, according to the U.S. Attorney's office, which said Spiller knew he was selling the gun to a felon on parole. But he sold the gun because he believed it would be used to settle a score with rival gang members.

Authorities said Spiller joined the Black P Stone Nation when he was in grade school and has been convicted of aggravated battery with a firearm, aggravated discharge of a firearm and aggravated battery of a Chicago Police officer.

He has admitted to shooting at people 5-10 times, and one of his convictions was from a drive-by shooting that left one person dead and four others injured.

Friday, 21 September 2012

1960s London Gangster Dies

Posted On 10:45 by Reporters 0 comments

London gang leader Charlie Richardson, who was a rival to the Kray twins, has died, according to Sky sources. Richardson, aged 78, fronted the notorious Richardson Gang, a group of criminals based in the south east of the city. His life story was made into a drama in 2004 starring actor Luke Goss. Richardson had been trying for years to clear his name after he was jailed for 25 years in 1967 when the Old Bailey heard lurid evidence from men who fell out with him and his brother Eddie and were summoned to their scrap metal yard. A key prosecution witness was travel agent Lucian Harris, who said he was tortured for information after his partner disappeared owing the Richardsons money. Richardson said a key witness lied and the judge was biased because he knew one of his fellow defendants and the jury foreman.

A reputed Albanian gangster who likes to show off his bling on Twitter was named yesterday

Posted On 10:42 by Reporters 0 comments

A reputed Albanian gangster who likes to show off his bling on Twitter was named yesterday in a federal indictment along with a dozen cohorts. Christopher Nrecaj, 29, posted photos of the jewelry and designer duds he amassed while allegedly leading a Bronx-based crew of drug dealers known as the “Wolfpack.” Nrecaj — whose Twitter avatar shows him with a snarling wolf’s head and the word “loyalty” tattooed on his chest — tweeted more than 500 times before getting busted last month.

Gang Member Arrested in Connection with Shooting

Posted On 10:16 by Reporters 0 comments

An arrest warrant was issued in August for Franky Hernandez for a crime that occurred in November 2010. Sgt. Dan Cohen said Hernandez is suspected of supplying a firearm to a fellow gang member who then used that same firearm in a shooting. New evidence recently surfaced that gave detectives probable cause to seek the arrest warrant, according to Cohen. Hernandez was booked into the Santa Barbara County Jail on charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm, providing that firearm to a convicted felon, and being an active participant in a criminal street gang. He is being held in lieu of $150,000 bail.

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Griselda Blanco, gunned down in Medellin, Colombia Two armed riders pulled up to Blanco as she was leaving a butcher shop in her hometown

Posted On 16:34 by Reporters 0 comments

Florida Department of Corrections

Griselda Blanco in 2004.

The convicted Colombian drug smuggler known as the “Godmother of Cocaine,” Griselda Blanco, 69, was gunned down by a motorcycle-riding assassin in Medellin, Colombian national police confirmed late Monday, according to the Miami Herald.

Blanco spent nearly 20 years in prison in the United States for drug trafficking and three murders before being deported to Colombia in 2004, the Herald reported.

Two armed riders pulled up to Blanco as she was leaving a butcher shop in her hometown, and one shot her twice in the head, the Herald reported, citing a report in El Colombiano newspaper.

Family members said Blanco had cut her ties to organized crime after returning to her country, the BBC reported. Police said they were investigating the motive.

Blanco was one of the first to engage in large-scale smuggling of cocaine into the United States from Colombia and set up many of the routes used by the Medellin cartel after she was sentenced in the United States in 1985, the BBC reported.

Investigators told the Herald that they estimate conservatively that Blanco was behind about 40 slayings. She was convicted in connection with three murders: Arranging the killing of two South Miami drug dealers who had not paid for a delivery, and ordering the assassination of a former enforcer for her organization, an operation that resulted in the death of the target’s 2-year-old son, the Herald reported.

Three of Blanco’s husbands were killed in violence related to drugs, the Herald reported, and one of her sons was named Michael Corleone, a reference to “The Godfather” movies.

Blanco is credited with originating motorcycle assassinations, the Herald reported.

“This is classic live-by-the-sword, die-by-the-sword,” filmmaker Billy Corben, who with Alfred Spellman made two “Cocaine Cowboys” documentaries, told the Herald. “Or in this case, live-by-the-motorcycle-assassin, die-by-the-motorcycle assassin.”

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Amber Gold affair is one of the biggest financial scandals to hit Poland since the fall of communism in 1989.

Posted On 12:44 by Reporters 0 comments

It was pretty much all the money Bozena Oracz had after a working life as an accountant: the equivalent of $15,000. She placed it in a fund investing in gold, with the hope of paying for her daughter's studies and getting treatment for a bad knee.

Those dreams were dashed when she discovered she had fallen victim to an elaborate fraud scheme that has left thousands of Poles, many of them elderly, facing financial ruin.

The so-called Amber Gold affair is one of the biggest financial scandals to hit Poland since the fall of communism in 1989. The extent of wrongdoing is still murky, but it seems to have some elements of a pyramid scheme, meaning the financial institutionused funds from new clients to pay off older clients rather than investing them.

Consumed with anger and desperation, 58-year-old Oracz traveled last week from a small town near Warsaw to a law firm in the capital to consider whether, after losing 50,000 zlotys, she should risk another 3,000 zlotys ($920; €730) on the fee to join a class-action lawsuit seeking to recover some of the losses.

"This was a lot of money to me — it was my savings," Oracz said, fighting back tears. Now retired and living on a small pension, she sees no way of building another nest egg. "My pension barely covers my needs," she said.

The affair has raised questions about the effectiveness of Poland's justice system and government because authorities failed to act against the scheme despite red flags from regulators and the criminal record of its young owner. Scrutiny has also focused on the prime minister due to business dealings his son had with those running the scheme. The scandal has even touched democracy icon Lech Walesa, who fears it could tarnish his good name.

Prosecutors say investors lost about 163 million zlotys ($50 million; €40 million), a number that has been mounting as more and more victims come forward. Any law suits could take care years to go through the courts, with no guarantee of their outcome.

"People are desperate," said Pawel Borowski, a lawyer preparing the class-action suit that Oracz is considering joining. "In most cases the clients lost life savings or sold family properties to make investments."

The financial institution, Amber Gold, promised guaranteed returns of 10 to 14 percent a year for what it claimed were investments in gold. Many of its clients were older Poles who grew up under communism and lacked the savvy to question how a financial firm could guarantee such a high return on a commodity whose value fluctuates on the international market. The promised returns compared well to the 3 to 5 percent interest offered by banks on savings accounts — earnings essentially wiped out by the country's 4 percent inflation rate.

"These were people with a low level of financial education," said Piotr Bujak, the chief economist for Poland at Nordea Markets. "They think it's still like in the old times, where everything was guaranteed by the state. They underestimated the risk."

Amber Gold launched in 2009, opening branches in city centers alongside respected banks, with white leather sofas and other sleek touches that conveyed sophistication and respectability. It bombarded Poles with convincing advertisements. Some early investors got out with their expected gains, adding to the fund's credibility.

The company, based in Gdansk, capitalized on gold's allure while playing on people's anxieties in unpredictable financial times. "We are dealing with a loss of confidence in the entire financial system and an urgent need for safe investments," one ad said. "The environment for gold is perfect."

Amber Gold drew in 50,000 investors over its three years of operation, though the company's founder, Marcin Plichta, said there were only about 7,000 at the time of liquidation.

Soon after Amber Gold began operations, the Polish Financial Supervision Authority put it on a "black list" of institutions that operate like banks without authorization. There are 17 other such black-listed institutions in operation, but the regulators lack the authority to shut them down. This has sparked a debate in the government and news media about whether courts should be more aggressive in intervening.

According to prosecutors, the company did use some of its money to invest in at least one legitimate business: It was the main investor in budget airline OLT Express. It was this investment that brought Amber Gold down — when the airline filed for bankruptcy, Amber Gold entered liquidation and its scheme of investments unraveled. Its bank accounts were blocked and it was unable to return the money of thousands of its customers.

Plichta was charged this month with six counts of criminal misconduct.

Prime Minister Donald Tusk's center-right government went into damage-control mode when it emerged that the leader's son, Michal Tusk, had done PR work for the airline. Tusk said he had warned his son against doing business with Plichta but that ultimately he son makes his own decisions.

Leszek Miller, the head of the opposition Democratic Left Alliance, asked how Tusk could warn his son against involvement in the airline but not warn the thousands of Poles who invested in the fund. Miller has called for a parliamentary inquiry into the scandal.

Public discontent is also centering on the justice system because Plichta, 28, has past convictions for fraud, and many Poles are asking why authorities — aware of his criminal record — didn't stop him sooner. Born Marcin Stefanski, he took his wife's last name to distance himself from his past crimes.

The country's top prosecutor, Andrzej Seremet, admitted Monday that prosecutors were negligent in failing to heed multiple warnings since 2009 about Amber Gold from the financial supervisory body. He announced personnel changes in the office he blamed for mistakes.

The affair also has an unlikely connection to the Solidarity leader and former president, Lech Walesa, because an Oscar-winning director, Andrzej Wajda, was relying on money from Amber Gold to produce a film about Walesa's struggle in the 1980s.

Walesa came out publicly to make clear he is not involved in any way, saying he doesn't want his name "dirtied."

Many of the unlucky investors are not only furious but wracked by shame and guilt.

Engineer Andrzej Malinowski, 61, put three months of salary — 25,000 zlotys ($7,660; €6,100) — into Amber Gold. He made the investment without consulting with his wife, sensing that there was some risk and that she would not have agreed.

Now he is so shaken and embarrassed that he doesn't want to talk about it, leaving his wife, Danuta Malinowska, to help unravel the mess.

"He saw that gold was going higher and higher so he believed that maybe it would be a good deal," Malinowska said. "Now he has so much guilt that I am trying to help — contacting the lawyer, filling in the forms, writing to the prosecutors. But the justice system is very ineffective. I don't believe we will be getting any of this money back."

Monday, 27 August 2012

Miguel Angel Trevino Morales new leader is emerging at the head of one of Mexico's most feared drug cartels.

Posted On 14:27 by Reporters 0 comments

  • Mexico Drug War Zetas_Plan.jpg

    This undated image taken from the Mexican Attorney General's Office rewards program website on Aug. 23, 2012, shows the alleged leader of Zetas drug cartel, Miguel Angel Trevino Morales, alias âZ-40.â (AP Photo/Mexican Attorney General's Office website)

Mexico's Violent Zetas Cartel Sees New Leader Miguel Angel Trevino Morales A split in the leadership of Mexico's violent Zetas cartel has led to the rise of Miguel Angel Trevino Morales, a man so feared that one rival has called for a grand alliance to confront a gang chief blamed for a new round of bloodshed in the country's once relatively tranquil central states.

Trevino, a former cartel enforcer who apparently has seized leadership of the gang from Zetas founder Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano, is described by lawmen and competing drug capos as a brutal assassin who favors getting rid of foes by stuffing them into oil drums, dousing them with gasoline and setting them on fire, a practice known as a "guiso," or "cook-out".

Law enforcement officials confirm that Trevino appears to have taken effective control of the Zetas, the hemisphere's most violent criminal organization, which has been blamed for a large share of the tens of thousands of deaths in Mexico's war on drugs, though other gangs too have repeatedly committed mass slayings.

"There was a lot of talk that he was pushing really hard on Lazcano Lazcano and was basically taking over the Zetas, because he had the personality, he was the guy who was out there basically fighting in the streets with the troops," said Jere Miles, a Zetas expert and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement special agent who was posted in Mexico until last year.

"Lazcano Lazcano, at the beginning he was kind of happy just to sit back and let Trevino do this, but I don't think he understood how that works in the criminal underworld," Miles said. "When you allow someone to take that much power, and get out in front like that, pretty soon the people start paying loyalty to him and they quit paying to Lazcano."

The rise has so alarmed at least one gang chieftain that he has called for gangs, drug cartels, civic groups and even the government to form a united front to fight Trevino Morales, known as "Z-40," whom he blamed for most of Mexico's violence.

"Let's unite and form a common front against the Zetas, and particularly against Z-40, Miguel Angel Trevino Morales, because this person with his unbridled ambition has caused so much terror and confusion in our country," said a man identified as Servando Gomez, leader of the Knights Templar cartel, in a viedo posted Tuesday on the internet.

A Mexican law enforcement official who wasn't authorized to speak on the record said the video appeared to be genuine,

"He is the main cause of everything that is happening in Mexico, the robberies, kidnappings, extortion," Gomez is heard saying on the tape. "We are inviting all the groups ... everyone to form a common front to attack Z-40 and put an end to him."

Trevino Morales has a fearsome reputation. "If you get called to a meeting with him, you're not going to come out of that meeting," said a U.S. law-enforcement official in Mexico City, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the topic.

In two years since Zetas split with their former allies in the Gulf cartel — a split in which Trevino reported played a central role — the gang has become one of Mexico's two main cartels, and is battling the rival Sinaloa cartel.

Now the Zetas' internal disputes have added to the violence of the conflict between gangs. Internal feuds spilled out into pitched battles in the normally quiet north-central state of San Luis Potosi in mid-August, when police found a van stuffed with 14 executed bodies.

San Luis Potosi state Attorney General Miguel Angel Garcia Covarrubias told local media that a 15th man who apparently survived the massacre told investigators that both the killers and the victims were Zetas. "It was a rivalry with the same organized crime group," Garcia Covarrubias said.

The leadership dispute also may have opened the door to lesser regional figures in the Zetas gang to step forward and rebel, analysts and officials said.

Analysts say that a local Zetas leader in the neighboring state of Zacatecas, Ivan Velazquez Caballero, "The Taliban," was apparently trying to challenge Trevino Morales' leadership grab, and that the 14 bullet-ridden bodies left in the van were The Taliban's men, left there as a visible warning by Trevino Morales' underlings.

The Taliban's territory, Zacatecas, appears to have been a hot spot in Trevino's dispute with Lazcano. It was in Zacatecas that a professionally printed banner was hung in a city park, accusing Lazcano of betraying fellow Zetas and turning them in to the police.

Trevino began his career as a teenage gofer for the Los Tejas gang, which controlled most crime in his hometown of Nuevo Laredo, across the border from the city of Laredo, Texas, officials say.

Around 2005, Trevino Morales was promoted to boss of the Nuevo Laredo territory, or "plaza" and given responsibility for fighting off the Sinaloa cartel's attempt to seize control of its drug-smuggling routes. He orchestrated a series of killings on the U.S. side of the border, several by a group of young U.S. citizens who gunned down their victims on the streets of the American city. American officials believe the hit men also carried out an unknown number of killings on the Mexican side of the border, the U.S. official said.

Trevino Morales is on Mexico's most-wanted list, with a reward of 30 million pesos ($2.28 million) offered for information leading to his capture.

Raul Benitez, a security expert at Mexico's National Autonomous University, said that the Zetas are inherently an unstable cartel with an already huge capacity for violence, and the possibility of more if they begin fighting internal disputes. "I think the Zetas are having problems, and there is no central command," he said.

The Zetas have been steadily expanding their influence and reaching into Central America in recent years, constructing a route for trafficking drugs that offloads Colombian cocaine in Honduras, ships it overland along Mexico's Gulf Coast and runs into over the border through Trevino Morales' old stomping grounds.

Samuel Logan, managing director of the security analysis firm Southern Pulse, notes that "personality-wise they (Trevino Morales and Lazcano) couldn't be more different," and believes the two may want to take the cartel in different directions. The stakes in who wins the dispute could be large for Mexico; Lazcano is believed to be more steady, more of a survivor who might have an interest in preserving the cartel as a stable organization.

"Lazcano may be someone who would take the Zetas in a direction where they'd become less of a thorn in the side for the new political administration," Logan said in reference to Enrique Pena Nieto, who is expected to take office as president on Dec. 1. "In contrast, Trevino is someone who wants to fight the fight."

Referring to Ignacio "Nacho" Coronel, a member of the rival Sinaloa Cartel who died in a shootout with soldiers in July 2010, Logan noted, "Trevino is someone who is going to want to go out, like Nacho Coronel went out, with his guns blazing."

Laurence Kilby, 40, of Cheltenham, who built and raced cars, was arrested after police seized cocaine with a street value of £1m.

Posted On 14:19 by Reporters 0 comments


Laurence Kilby, 40, of Cheltenham, who built and raced cars, was arrested after police seized cocaine with a street value of £1m.

A "privileged" racing driver has been jailed with 11 other drug smugglers. Crown Court heard he was head of a gang moving drugs from Eastern Europe along the M4 corridor to London, western England and south Wales.

Kilby was heavily in debt and turned to crime to maintain his lifestyle of fast cars and high living.

Raids on properties

Kilby was jailed in June but his conviction, and those of the rest of the gang, can now be reported following the conclusion of another trial.

In an undercover operation between Gloucestershire and Avon and Somerset Police, officers seized 3kg of cocaine as it was being ferried between London and Cheltenham in October 2010.

Another 1kg of the drug was intercepted in Cheltenham in February 2011 and 2.5kg was discovered in raids on properties in Cheltenham, Staverton, Bristol and London in July 2011.

The gang of 12 drug dealers from Gloucestershire, Bristol and London received sentences of between 18 years and four years seven months.

It can now be reported Kilby, who was jailed in June, and Vladan Vujovic, 43, of Grange Road, London were found guilty of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs. Both were jailed for 18 years.

Laurence Kilby racing in the 2009 Castle Combe Saloon Car ChampionshipKilby built and raced cars with the company he owned, Ajec Racing

Richard Jones, 42, of Bradley Stoke, Bristol, was sentenced to 15 years for the same offence, and Mark Poole, 47, from Portishead, was sentenced to nine years seven months after pleading guilty to conspiracy to supply Class A drugs.

Police said Kilby sourced the drug in London from an East European criminal gang, which included Vujovic.

Vujovic ran a baggage handling company at Heathrow Airport and was said to receive the cocaine before it was distributed around the South West and Wales.

Kilby is the former husband of Flora Vestey, daughter of Lord Vestey, and was owner of motor racing firm Ajec Racing which was based in Staverton.

He was heavily in debt and turned to crime to maintain his lifestyle of fast cars and high living.

'Well-connected socialite'

In a separate charge, Kilby also pleaded guilty to stealing money from the charity Help for Heroes and was sentenced to 10 months, to run concurrently with his 18-year sentence.

He organised a charity race day at Gloucestershire Airport in July 2010, but failed to pass on between £3,500 and £4,000 in proceeds to the charity Help for Heroes.

Det Insp Steve Bean, from Gloucestershire Police, said Kilby was the main man.

"He portrayed himself as a well-connected socialite and businessman, whilst indulging his ambition as a minor league racing driver.

Drugs wrapped in plastic packagesPolice seized 6.5kg of drugs during the operation

"Despite a privileged background, the reality was that his lifestyle was funded by the ill-gotten gains of drug dealing.

"He continually lied and blamed others in an attempt to distance himself from the conspiracy.

"He displayed an air of arrogance and thought he could get away with it because he didn't get his hands dirty."

The majority of the gang were jailed in June, but reporting restrictions meant it could not be reported until now, after the sentencing of the remaining gang members.

Others members of the gang to be sentenced were:

  • David Chapman, 29, from Bourton-on-the-Water, Gloucestershire, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to supply and was sentenced to nine years.
  • William Garnier, 31, from Cheltenham, pleaded guilty to supplying Class A drugs and was sentenced six years and eight months.
  • Garry Burrell, 46, from Easton, Bristol, and John Tomlin, 28, from Newtown, Gloucestershire both pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine and were sentenced to six years and six months and four years and six months respectively.
  • Timothy Taylor, 40, from Bristol was found guilty of supplying Class A drugs and was sentenced to four years and seven months.
  • Brian Barrett, 48, from Keynsham was found guilty of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs and was sentenced to 10 years.
  • Scott Everest, 39, from Clevedon was found guilty of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs and was jailed for seven years.

Jonathan Tanner, 45, from Warminster was sentenced to 18 months for possession with intent to supply of cannabis, but was cleared of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs.

Darren Weetch, 38, from Bristol, pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine with intent to supply. He was sentenced to 16 months.

Officers also worked with Thames Valley Police and the Metropolitan Police during the operation.

Bikie gang suspects in brawl arrests at Penrith shopping centre

Posted On 14:05 by Reporters 0 comments

FOUR men with alleged links to outlaw motorcycle gangs were arrested last week after a brawl at a Penrith shopping centre. Police officers from the gangs squad and Penrith local area command had been investigating the brawl, which forced shoppers to flee for their safety about 2.45pm last Monday. Police will allege a man was leaving the shopping centre when he was confronted by a group of nine men and fighting began. A number of people tried to intervene, including an unknown male who was assaulted. All involved in the brawl then left the scene. At 7am last Thursday, police simultaneously raided four homes at St Marys, Emu Plains, South Windsor and Freemans Reach. Three men with alleged links to the Rebels were arrested at St Marys and Emu Plains, while an alleged senior Nomads member was arrested at Freemans Reach. During the search warrants, police seized distinctive gang clothing, quantities of anabolic steroids and prescription drugs and a set of knuckledusters. A man, 29, of Emu Plains, was charged with affray, participate in a criminal group and two counts of possess prescribed restricted substance. A man, 44, of Freemans Reach, was charged with affray, possess prohibited weapon, and two counts of possess prescribed restricted substance. A man, 25, of St Marys, and a 23-year-old New Zealand man were each charged with affray and participate in a criminal group. Penrith crime manager Detective Inspector Grant Healey said further arrests were anticipated.

Al Capone’s signature to star in gangster auction

Posted On 12:10 by Reporters 0 comments

If he was known by his full name, he might not have been so universally feared.   But that’s the way the notorious king of Chicago’s Prohibition-era underworld signed it — “Alphonse Capone.” And that flowing signature, which Capone inked four times on a transcript of his January 24, 1925, interrogation by Chicago Police, could fetch $100,000 next month when it will be the star lot in an auction of gangster memorabilia. The four-page, typed deposition details a mostly nonresponsive interview Capone gave detectives investigating the attempted murder of his former mentor and associate, John Torrio. Though Capone almost certainly knew that members of the rival O’Bannion gang were responsible for Torrio’s shooting, he stonewalled the cops with deadpan humor, the transcript shows. Asked what he did for a living, Capone told the officers he had an antique furniture business at 2224 S. Wabash. Asked the name of the store he said it had “no name.” Later asked how many times he’d been arrested in Chicago, Capone told the officers, “Every time something happens, I get arrested.”

The lakefront Florida retreat where FBI agents gunned down gangland legend Ma Barker in 1935 is up for sale - bullet holes and all.

Posted On 12:07 by Reporters 0 comments

The two-story wood frame house in rural Ocklawaha, 62 miles northwest of Orlando, is the site of one of the most celebrated raids in FBI history and the water-side home is expected to fetch up to $1 million.


Kept in the family since the famous gangland boss' final stand, the home is still riddled with the bullet holes from the gun-fight in which the FBI reportedly fired 2,000 shots during a four-hour stand-off.

Located on Lake Weir, the home where Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI in 1935 is up for sale - bullet holes and all

Located on Lake Weir, the home where Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI in 1935 is up for sale - bullet holes and all


'It's like walking into a time capsule in 1935. The fact that it has this extra history is a really interesting cachet,'  said  Mark Arnold, an agent with Stirling Sotheby's International Realty, who are handling the sale.


He was referring to how Kate 'Ma' Barker, who was branded Public Enemy No. 1 by the federal government for a rash of murders, kidnapping and robberies committed in the early 1930s, was killed in the house along with one of her sons in a barrage of bullets from federal agents.



Photos released at the time, believed by some to have been staged, show Barker lying dead in a second-floor bedroom clutching a machine gun.


But the Barker story is the stuff of gangster legend and crime buffs may put a premium on a prime piece of criminal memorabilia.

The bedroom where Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI in 1935

The bedroom where Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI in 1935

Stirling Sotherby's real estate advisor Mark Arnold stands in the second floor of the home that Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI in 1935

Stirling Sotherby's real estate advisor Mark Arnold stands in the second floor of the home that Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI in 1935


A bullet hole remains on the wall that Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI in 1935. The two-story frame house in rural Ocklawaha, is the site of one of the most celebrated raids in FBI history

A bullet hole remains on the wall that Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI in 1935. The two-story frame house in rural Ocklawaha, is the site of one of the most celebrated raids in FBI history


The house is 2,016 square feet (187 sq meters) with four bedrooms and 1 1/2 bathrooms. The sale includes 9.5 acres shaded by stands of old oak trees and 1.5 acres of sandy beach on Lake Weir.


Books and movies including the 1970 film "Bloody Mama" starring Shelly Winters focus on what some see as the mythical Ma Barker. But the real Barker may have had little to do with Hollywood images and the criminal exploits of her four sons.


The four men were members of the ruthless Barker-Karpis gang that rampaged across the South and Midwest in the 1920s and early 1930s. But there has been little evidence to support claims that Barker herself was some sort of stone-cold criminal mastermind.


Taken directly after the raid this picture shows the house where Fred and Ma Barker were both were slain after a four hour gun battle with the F.B.I.

Taken directly after the raid this picture shows the house where Fred and Ma Barker were both were slain after a four hour gun battle with the F.B.I.


Ma Barker and her Thompson gun in an undated picture of the legendary matriarch

Ma Barker and her Thompson gun in an undated picture of the legendary matriarch


A realtor working for Bradford rented the home to a woman flashing a lot of cash who introduced herself as Kate Blackburn and her husband. The renters turned out to be Ma Barker and her fugitive son Fred.

Agents surrounded the two-story, wooden-framed home and fired more than 2,000 rounds during the course of the ensuing firefight.

The home, built in 1930 by Miami entrepreneur Carson Bradford, was described as the 'scene of the battle' by then FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover.

Put up for sale by Orlando resident and family member Carson Good, the 10-acre property in southeast Marion County is being sold through Stirling Sotheby's International Realty.

'There's unbelievable interest around the world in crime memorabilia,' said Roger Soderstrom, the broker who is conducting the sale to the Orlando Sentinel.

Fred Barker, and his mother, Kate Barker, are pictured in the morgue at Ocala, Florida, shortly following their gun battle with Federal agents at their hideaway at Oklawaha, Florida

Fred Barker, and his mother, Kate Barker, are pictured in the morgue at Ocala, Florida, shortly following their gun battle with Federal agents at their hideaway at Oklawaha, Florida

'People have never seen a property where everything is intact from the time of the event.

'We think the buyer could be someone who has a passion for crime memorabilia and who wants to build their own house [on the property] and keep this as a collector's house. 

'It could be a bed-and-breakfast. You could have weddings there.'

Official FBI reports from 1935 say that agents began the shoot-out at the Barker household by throwing three canisters of tear gas inside the house at 7.15 a.m.

Shooting began soon afterwards and the Barkers were reported to have used Thompson machine guns to attempt to repel the federal agents.

A bullet hole remains on the wall that Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI

A bullet hole remains on the wall that Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI


Stirling Sotherby's real estate advisor Mark Arnold holds a crime scene photo at the second floor of the home in Ocklawaha

Stirling Sotherby's real estate advisor Mark Arnold holds a crime scene photo at the second floor of the home in Ocklawaha

Three hours later, the agents reportedly had almost run out of ammunition and asked Willie Woodbury, a handyman on the estate to check that Barker and her son were indeed dead.

Finding that they were, agents detailed the scene and noted that Barker had died in a curled-up position, her slippers on the floor nearby, beneath the bedroom window.


The report filed said that Fred Barker died with 10 bullet holes in his left shoulder and chest, three bullets in his head, a steel Colt pistol underneath his body and four $1,000 bills folded in his pocket.

Upstairs and downstairs walls are pockmarked with indentations and raised plaster patches where bullets hit, and at least one through-and-through bullet hole remains un-repaired on the staircase. 

A still-serviceable wooden bedroom chair shows gouges from flying bullets.

Located on Lake Weir, the home where Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI in 1935 is up for sale and could fetch up to $1 million

Located on Lake Weir, the home where Kate 'Ma' Barker was shot dead by the FBI in 1935 is up for sale and could fetch up to $1 million


In the ensuing years, four generations of Bradfords continued to use the house as a summer getaway, Arnold said. 

The only updates made to the house were in the kitchen. 

Generations of Bradford children idled away summers at the Ocklawaha house digging around the property in an unsuccessful hunt for the gang's stash of stolen money, Arnold said.


'What is remarkable is this family has preserved all of this through four generations and it's still there and it's in good shape,' said Arnold said. 

'It just has a few bullet holes.'


He said potential buyers have expressed interest in a variety of uses for the property including a bed-and-breakfast resort. Offers will be accepted through October 5.

27 charged in California-Mexico methamphetamine ring

Posted On 11:38 by Reporters 0 comments

 Local and federal authorities moved Thursday to break up an alleged drug trafficking ring connecting a major Mexican cartel and San Gabriel Valley street gangs, arresting 17 people in a pre-dawn sweep. A federal indictment unsealed Thursday charges 27 defendants with making, possessing and dealing methamphetamine imported by La Familia Michoacana, one of Mexico’s most violent cartels, to two Pomona gangs: Los Amables and Westside Pomona Malditos. Seven law enforcement agencies, including the Pasadena and Pomona police, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, the FBI and the Drug Enforcement Administration, were involved in the sweep. Thursday’s crackdown is the culmination of a probe called Operation Crystal Light, a 16-month investigation by the San Gabriel Valley Safe Streets Gang Task Force. The investigation was launched after a 2011 kidnapping among suspected gang members in Southern California. Officers said they seized nine weapons, an undisclosed amount of methamphetamine, other drugs, and paraphernalia in Thursday morning raids in Los Angeles, Riverside and San Bernardino counties. The probe involved about 200 law enforcement officers and several undercover purchases. “The goal of the federal task force is to disrupt the network so it’s disrupted permanently,” Timothy Delaney, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Criminal Division in Los Angeles, said. “Today’s arrests took some very serious players in the methamphetamine world off the streets.” The methamphetamine came into the country in liquid form via airplane, boats and cars, officials said. The drug was recrystallized at an Ontario home before local gangs would sell it and funnel money to the Mexican cartel. Most of the drugs were being sold in Pomona and Ontario, according to Assistant U.S. Atty. Shawn Nelson. Dealers were selling multiple pounds a day and making up to $9,000 per pound, Nelson said. He described the arrests as “a good dent” in the Mexican cartel’s local drug network. Three suspects were in custody before the raid and seven remain at large, federal authorities said. The indictment alleges that a La Familia Michoacana associate named Jose Juan Garcia Barron oversaw the transport of the meth between Mexico and Los Angeles County. Delaney said Garcia Barron is among the suspects who have not been apprehended. The 17 arrested Thursday were expected to make their first court appearance Thursday afternoon at U.S. District Court in downtown Los Angeles.

Police think Ogden drive-bys are tied to gang's power struggle

Posted On 11:34 by Reporters 0 comments

Police believe drive-by shootings at an Ogden home Tuesday night and Wednesday morning may be related to a violent power struggle within a street gang over control of leadership, drugs and money. Ogden Police Lt. Scott Conley declined to identify the gang, but said members are not affiliated with the Ogden Trece. On Monday, 2nd District Judge Ernie Jones issued a permanent injunction against Trece members, banning them from associating with each other in public and being in the presence of guns, drugs and alcohol. The injunction also places Treces under an 11 p.m. curfew. The drive-by shootings at a home in the 500 block of 28th Street are signs of in-fighting among members of a local gang who are attempting to resolve their differences through escalating violence, Conley said. “They are in the same gang and are arguing back and forth,” he said, noting police have gathered intelligence on the dispute. “We are taking enforcement action to eradicate the problem or get the individuals involved incarcerated.” Six to eight gang members are believed to be involved in the dispute.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Calgary gangster deported

Posted On 00:32 by Reporters 0 comments

A known gang member who was called the ‘trigger man’ for a notorious street gang in Calgary has been removed from the country. Tien Ngoc Ho, 25, who was found guilty of nearly two dozen weapons charges in 2011, was deported to Vietnam under escort by CBSA officers on August 13. Ho was ordered deported following 26 firearms-related convictions for which he was sentenced to six years in jail. Those charges stem from an incident were Ho was found in possession of a cache of weapons, body armour, and gloves. Following his imprisonment, he was released into CBSA custody on July 13.

Friday, 17 August 2012

federal grand jury has indicted 13 alleged members of a Puerto Rican gang known as "The Butchers"

Posted On 16:29 by Reporters 0 comments

federal grand jury has indicted 13 alleged members of a Puerto Rican gang known as "The Butchers" who are accused of killing a lawyer during a drive-by shooting. U.S. Attorney Rosa Emilia Rodriguez says the suspects are charged with five murders, two attempted murders and drug trafficking. Among the victims in those alleged crimes was attorney Dimaries Broco Irizarry, who was fatally shot when she got caught in a drive-by shooting in March 2011 while driving home. Prosecutors accuse the suspects of conspiring to possess with intent to distribute crack, cocaine, heroin and marijuana in the northern coastal town of Manati. They also are charged with shipping marijuana to Texas and using profits to buy weapons and ammunition. Rodriguez made the announcement Thursday.
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Friday, 3 August 2012

Kapoor was one of 13 people arrested last February as part of an undercover police investigation dubbed Project Deplete targeting the illegal gun and drug trade.

Posted On 22:56 by Reporters 0 comments

.22 calibre Ruger handgunA file photo shows a .22 calibre Ruger handgun. (QMI Agency files)

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Winnipeg drug dealer Pardeep Kapoor book-ended Monday with court appearances that netted him a 10-year prison sentence.

Kapoor, 32, was sentenced Monday morning to three years in prison for possession of a restricted loaded firearm. Hours later, he was back before another judge, who sentenced him to seven years for drug trafficking.

Kapoor was one of 13 people arrested last February as part of an undercover police investigation dubbed Project Deplete targeting the illegal gun and drug trade. Like similar investigations before it, Project Deplete used a paid police agent and gang associate to ensnare targets.

Court heard Kapoor sold the agent half a kilogram of cocaine for $22,000 in October 2010.

Kapoor was not an initial target of the investigation and had no gang ties, said defence lawyer Sheldon Pinx.

“He was conducting himself independently,” Pinx said. “It was his decision to conduct the transaction on the part of himself.” The police investigation was suspended for several months after the police agent became the target of death threats. Kapoor had not yet been arrested on Aug. 25, 2011, when police pulled him over for a traffic stop on Maryland Street.

Kapoor and two others were removed from the vehicle at gunpoint, but not before Kapoor managed to hand a .22-calibre pistol to a friend, who put it in her purse.

Cops found the loaded gun and also seized a bulletproof vest from the car.

Kapoor’s prior record includes convictions for robbery and assault with a weapon.

Sunday, 29 July 2012

NYPD detective suspended after kidnapping victim found in his garage

Posted On 15:47 by Reporters 0 comments

17-year veteran of the New York Police Department has been suspended without pay after a kidnapping victim was found tied up in his garage. The New York Post reports Ondre Johnson, a detective with the Brooklyn north gang unit, was being questioned in connection with the incident and was forced to surrender his gun and badge. A source tells the Post the 25-year-old victim was snatched off the street on July 26. The victim's friends then got calls demanding $75,000 for the victim's release. The call was traced to Johnson's home, reports. When authorities arrived Friday afternoon, Johnson answered the door and identified himself as a detective with the NYPD. Investigators then found the victim tied up in the garage. Four men have been charged in the apparent kidnapping scheme, reports. 30-year-old Hakeem Clark, who lives in the same building as Johnson, was charged with kidnapping and weapons possession along with 27-year-old Jason Hutson and 27-year-old James Gayle. 24-year-old Alfredo Haughton was charged with kidnapping.

Milllionaire mobster Jamie Stevenson started his criminal career in the McGovern clan.

Posted On 14:18 by Reporters 0 comments

Jamie Stevenson

The best friend and best man of Tony McGovern joined the north Glasgow mob, who became one 

of the most feared drugs gangs of the 90s.

But a bitter fall-out led to a botched McGovern attempt on Stevenson’s life.

The betrayal infuriated him and soon afterwards 35-year-old McGovern was shot dead outside the New Morven pub in Glasgow’s Springburn in one of Scotland’s most notorious gangland assassinations.

Stevenson was arrested but the case was dropped due to lack of evidence.

The 2000 murder became a catalyst for Stevenson to launch Scotland’s biggest drug-smuggling gang.

He enlisted crooked lorry drivers and ran his own haulage firms to bring drugs and guns from mainland Europe.

One of the drivers turned supergrass as the Scottish Crime and Drugs Enforcement Agency targeted Stevenson during the four-year Operation Folklore, which ultimately led to him being jailed.

Jamie “Iceman” Stevenson is back on the streets

Posted On 14:16 by Reporters 0 comments

Jamie “Iceman” Stevenson is back on the streets – less than halfway through his prison sentence for laundering £1million of drugs cash. Scotland’s most powerful mobster has been enjoying meals at expensive restaurants and socialising with pals after being allowed home for a week each month. Stevenson – who was also accused of shooting dead his best friend in an underworld hit – was put behind bars in September 2006 when he was arrested after a four-year surveillance operation by the Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency. He was later sentenced to 12 years and nine months for money laundering. But, we can reveal, he is now allowed out of Castle Huntly open prison near Dundee – just five years and 10 months later. A source said: “He seems determined to show his face all around town to deliver the message that he’s back and, as far as he’s concerned, nothing has changed. “A lot of people are surprised that he’s being allowed out so early. Some are not too pleased about it for a number of reasons.” Stevenson, 47, has been spotted at Bothwell Bar & Brasserie, which is run by his friend Stewart Gilmore. He and his cronies have also dined at upmarket Italian restaurant Il Pavone in Glasgow’s Princes Square shopping centre. And Stevenson has joined friends at various other restaurants and hotels, including Glasgow’s Hilton Garden Inn. A Sunday Mail investigation can today reveal that the Parole Board for Scotland could recommend Stevenson’s total freedom as early as February next year. However, the final decision on his release will rest with Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill. Yesterday, Labour justice spokesman Lewis Macdonald said: “I’m surprised to hear this and that anyone in these circumstances should get out of jail before the halfway point of their sentence – far less so when the conviction is of someone involved in organised crime. “The only circumstances where that would be conceivable would be if someone completely changed their lifestyle. But even then that should not be before they’ve served half their sentence. “I’m sure the victims of these crimes – and with drugs there are direct and indirect victims – will also be surprised at this.” To prepare Stevenson for his release, prison bosses have allowed him to stay a full week each month at his modest flat in Burnside, near Glasgow. On Friday, we watched him leaving the property with his wife Caroline and driving off in a silver Audi. A prison service insider said: “The Parole Board expect the prison authorities to have allowed home visits to test suitability for release ahead of the first eligible parole date. In Stevenson’s case, that’s next February. “There are conditions attached which vary but usually include the obvious ones like not mixing with other criminals and staying only at the designated address. “For prisoners sentenced to more than 10 years, the Parole Board make their recommendations to the Justice Secretary, who then decides whether to release on licence. “Stevenson is trying to keep his nose clean to convince the Parole Board that he poses no threat to society. “But, given his high profile and significance, it’s inevitable that the authorities will be careful before making any final decision.” Stevenson headed a global smuggling gang with a multi-million-pound turnover when he was brought down by the SCDEA’s Operation Folklore, which seized £61million of drugs. He faced drug and money laundering charges along with eight other suspects, including his 53-year-old wife. But his lawyers struck a deal with the Crown Office to admit money laundering in exchange for his wife’s freedom and the drugs charges being dropped. Stevenson’s stepson Gerry Carbin Jr, 32, was also jailed – for five years and six months – but was freed in 2010. Stevenson was previously arrested for the murder of Tony McGovern, 35, who was gunned down in Glasgow’s Springburn in 2000. But prosecutors dropped the case through lack of evidence. A gangland source said: “He does not fear any kind of reprisal from Tony’s brothers, nor does he regard any other criminals in Scotland as a threat or even as rivals. He did not fear any other operation in Scotland before he was jailed. Why would he now?” Two years ago, the Sunday Mail exposed a backdoor deal when the Crown handed back Stevenson’s £300,000 watch collection, which had been seized under proceeds of crime of legislation. Last June, he was sent back to high-security Shotts jail in Lanarkshire from an open prison after a major SCDEA drugs probe, Operation Chilon. Detectives believed that the gang they investigated was controlled by Stevenson. Haulage firm boss Charles McAughey’s home was one of 11 targeted in raids. In 2009, we revealed that French police had found 684kg of pure cocaine worth £31million in a lorry owned by McAughey. Chilon resulted in the SCDEA seizing 242kg of cannabis worth £1.21million and the jailing of three men for a combined 15 years.

Four Dead in Gang Related Shooting

Posted On 13:54 by Reporters 0 comments

Police in Alice are investigating a shooting that occurred near Reynolds Street. According to investigators, it all started on South Nayer Street where police say Isaac Vela was standing on the side of the road waiting for a ride. A vehicle -- with four people inside passed by. One of the passengers, police say, shot Vela in the face. The vehicle fled the scene, but the driver only made it a few blocks before he lost control of the vehicle. It smashed into a nearby school. Three of the four people inside the car died. The other is in the hospital...where investigators will interview him tomorrow. Police say all of the men involved are known gang members.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Tulisa's Friend, 21, Shot Dead In Gangland Hit

Posted On 08:52 by Reporters 0 comments

Reece James, 21, a close friend of Tulisa Contostavlos has been shot dead in a reported gangland attack. The 21-year-old, who appeared with Tulisa in a video for rapper Nines, was shot in the head in a "pre-planned and targeted" hit, 100 miles from his home in London, reports the UK's Sun newspaper. Police found James' body in Boscombe, Bournemouth, at around 2.30am near where Somali drug gangs are said operate. A 22-year-old man was arrested. Reece was said to have been in the area with some friends for "a couple of months", though had filmed the video earlier this month with Tulisa and rapper Nines on the Church End Estate in Harlesden, North West London. The former N Dubz star caused controversy at the time, making a "C" symbol to the camera - the same sign that is used by Harlesden's notorious Church Road Soldiers gang. Tulisa claimed it was a reference to Camden, where she was born. Twitter tributes began flooding in last night, with one user writing, "RIP Reece James. Thoughts are with him and his family and friends". Local MP Tobias Ellwood described the killing as "a spill over from the drugs turf war in the capital", adding, "This was one London gang chasing down another, carrying out a professional hit and then going back".

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Out of dozens suspected to have connections with the Bloods street gang, only three went for a chance at bond on Monday.

Posted On 17:31 by Reporters 0 comments

 The rest waived their hearings.

The locals are suspected of crimes ranging from kidnapping to tax crimes to murder.

Most of them quickly walked in and out of the federal courthouse. Family, friends, and even a pastor to one of the suspects were also on hand to try and learn more about the case.

One suspect was described as a church member, another as a caretaker to his sick grandmother -- all sat inside together in a courthouse where cameras weren't allowed.

FBI agents say they are either members of the famous Bloods street gang or close associates.

"To begin with, it's not against the law to belong to a gang," law enforcement veteran and gang researcher Robert Baker said. "They have to commit a crime in order to be arrested."

Baker says being in a gang isn't necessarily wrong, it's the crimes that can be encouraged. In this case, officers say the crimes from Columbia area Bloods range from kidnapping to tax crimes to murder.

"Some gangs put fear of God into members and will actually commit murder in order to instill fear into gang members in hopes there people aren't gonna say anything about the gang," Baker said.

Baker says every gang is different. In court, only three suspects chose to have a detention hearing and request bond.

An FBI agent testified against them and gave details on how Bloods -- who were featured on a History Channel special 2 years ago -- operate in Columbia. The agent also said there's a hierarchy naming three suspects as top ranking in the Columbia area.

"Ranks depend on what the local set wants to call hierarchy. Could be president, secretary, treasurer or so on. It could be captain, private, soldier what have you," Baker said.

For the rest of the group known for sticking together, they will be back in court.

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

An alleged member of the New York Chinatown gang was pulled off a flight to Hong Kong

Posted On 23:21 by Reporters 0 comments

An alleged member of the New York Chinatown gang was pulled off a flight to Hong Kong, minutes before takeoff, as he tried to flee to China because he is suspected of executing two women and burning down their apartment. 

US authorities boarded the Delta Airlines flight at John F Kennedy International Airport on Monday afternoon and hauled away the unidentified man in handcuffs. 

Police believe he is responsible for shooting Xiao L. Li, 70, and Yong Hua Chen, 36, in the head at close range on June 29 then setting fire to their apartment in Chinatown. 

Brothel fire

Horrific: The alleged gangster suspected of shooting the women, age 70 and 36, in the head at close range then torching this Chinatown apartment

The New York Post reports that the man decided to flee after he saw police impounding his car to search for evidence into the horrific murders. 

Authorities believe he planned to slip into Beijing from Hong Kong to get even farther away from the reach of American law enforcement. 


 'He was already in his seat. The doors were closing and the jet was preparing to take off. As soon as this guy saw us, he knew he was had,' a source told the Post. 

Witnesses said the man's hands and fingers were covered with tattoos signifying him as a 'hardcore gang member.'

Delta Airlines

Just in time: The flight to Hong Kong was minutes to taking off from John F Kennedy International Airport when authorities boarded it

The two murdered women were believed to be in the sex trade and neither of them lived in the burned apartment on Henry Street, which was a known brothel, the Gothamist reports.

After the fire a man wearing gloves was spotted running from the building.

Police say they don't have enough evidence yet to charge the gangster with the murders. However, they were able to arrest him on unrelated charges.

Friday, 13 July 2012

Abu Salem will remain in India

Posted On 07:05 by Reporters 0 comments

Underworld don Abu Salem will remain in India as the top Portugal Court has observed that it was not obliged to extradite the gangster back to the European country after it was held there was violation of deportation rules by Indian authorities. Official sources in New Delhi on Wednesday explained the position on the extradition status of Salem against the backdrop of the top court rejecting India's plea challenging a Supreme Court verdict upholding a lower court order cancelling his extradition to this country. According to the sources, the Constitutional Court's Judges have made it clear that the judgement of lower court which acknowledged violation of extradition treaty does not, by itself, oblige India to render Salem back to Portugal. The lower court had cancelled the extradition over violation of deportation rules by India. CBI officials and MEA officials who have been in constant touch with their lawyers in Portugal feel there is no legal consequences for the violation of principle of speciality and the political and diplomatic instances would have to be launched by India to "find the best solution". "A possible negotiation with the Portuguese government concerning the next steps of the case is not bound by any strict guidelines, neither defined by (Portugal) law," a legal opinion received from Portugal said. It was felt that ministry of external affairs should submit a fresh guarantee reiterating the earlier commitment regarding non-execution of the death penalty or life imprisonment not exceeding 25 years. The legal opinion of Portugal also suggested that for any fresh charges slapped on the gangster, he will be pardoned, the sources said. Portuguese Constitutional Court had rejected India's plea challenging its Supreme Court order of upholding a lower court's order which had said that the extradition treaty in respect had been violated by India. However, the grounds on which the Constitutional court had declined were that the requesting state is a mere participant and not a party to these proceedings. India must not be granted the right to appeal from the decision of the Lisbon court of appeals and that such interpretation of the applicable provisions of the law are not unconstitutional, the Constitutional court said. Salem, who is accused in the 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts case which left 250 dead, was extradited on November 11, 2005 from Portugal where he was arrested in 2002, along with his girl friend Monica Bedi. The Portugal Supreme Court had upheld a lower court order saying that India had violated extradition rules for Salem case by slapping new charges against him which attracted death penalty. India had moved to the Constitutional Court against the Supreme Court order besides annexing the order of February 17, 2011 of Supreme Court of India whereby stay on trial for all fresh cases, which invoked a death penalty or jail for 25 years, was ordered. Delhi and Mumbai Police, however, had slapped charges which invoke death penalty against him leaving the government and the CBI red-faced. Later, police wanted to withdraw the charges but the courts did not approve of it that led to a protracted legal battle which ended in Supreme Court in September 2010 that rejected the underworld don's plea. more from this section PC clarifies, BJP doesn't buy his 'ugly joke' Pranab's responsible for economic mess: Sangma 'Monsoon has covered entire country but still 23% deficient' more» share share on facebookshare on linkedinshare on googleshare on emailmore... 3 Comments          email     print comment Note: By posting your comments here you agree to the terms and conditions of AdChoices Advertisement stories photos videos most viewed Bol Bachchan is Rohit Shetty's biggest opener ever Telugu movie review: Eega exceptionally innovative Nicole Kidman lying low to avoid Tom-Katie questions Rohit Shetty open to Bol Bachchan sequel B-Town women face abuse, discrimination more » Follow International News tweets with us now! 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Gangster 'Leggy Pownall’ jailed for plot to rob St Helens drug dealer

Posted On 07:04 by Reporters 0 comments

A CRIMINAL gangster known as ‘Leggy Pownall’ has been jailed for seven years for conspiring to rob a St Helens drug dealer. Described in court by Judge David Aubrey as “ruthless”, John Pownall, aged 51 of Third Street, Bamfurlong, Wigan pleaded guilty to the plot against Michael Baker in January, 2011. Pownall’s conviction follows an 18-month long investigation by officers from Titan (North West Regional Organised Crime Unit), into a group of criminals who played a part in the conspiracy. Last August five other men were convicted for their role. A gang had entered Baker’s house on Watery Lane in Sutton and restrained him by using cable ties. Armed with a stash of drugs, they were arrested by police, who had been waiting for them. Following the sentencing, Detective Superintendent Jason Hudson, head of Operations for Titan said: “This sentence has seen an organised criminal, who is also known as ‘Leggy Pownall’, taken off the streets of the North West. “Our commitment at Titan to bring him to justice has been determined and prolonged. "His conviction, and those of his associates, of a robbery where they were prepared to rob others criminals of drugs for financial gain sends a powerful message that no-one is untouchable and Titan will continue to work hard to take organised criminals off our streets to make our communities safer for all." Pownall was also convicted of mortgage fraud and under the Proceeds of Crime Act will have his criminally acquired assets stripped. He also had links with a corrupt St Helens based police officer, Detective Constable Paul Fletcher, who was jailed for seven years for leaking confidential information to criminals and supplying anabolic steroids. Ads by Google Basic Bank Account Uk Open An Account With No Credit Checks Or Hidden Fees. Apply Now In sentencing at Liverpool Crown Court, Judge Aubrey said Pownall had “instigated a well planned, organised robbery which was evidenced by his involvement with a corrupt Merseyside Police Officer (Paul Fletcher)". The judge added: “Pownall was the organiser and instigator of the robbery not the executor. He had an appalling criminal record." Pownall had previously been featured in a Sunday People story called ‘Bad Fellas’ as one of the North West's top organised criminals. In relation to his conviction for mortgage fraud, Pownall will be sentenced on Friday, July 13. Michael Baker, 34, and Clint Tinsley, 33, were convicted of conspiracy to supply cannabis and illegal psychoactive drugs at Liverpool Crown Court on Friday, May 18. Each received jail terms of three years at Liverpool Crown Court on Wednesday, June 6. The other men jailed last August for being involved in the conspiracy were: Newton McKenzie, 32, from Medlock Way, in Wigan, who was jailed for six-and-a-half years Craig Barker, 26, from Newlyn Drive, Ashton –in-Makerfield, who was jailed for eight years. John Jones, 32, from Silverwell Street in Bolton was given four-and-a-half years. Lee Fairclough, 23, from Leagate Close in Wigan was given three-and-a-half-years. Otis Smith, of no fixed address was jailed for five years.

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

1 man killed, 1 wounded in South L.A. drive-by shooting

Posted On 10:56 by Reporters 0 comments

One man was killed and a second wounded Monday in a drive-by shooting at a gas station in Hyde Park, Los Angeles police said. The shooting occurred shortly after 4 p.m. at a gas station near Slauson Avenue and Crenshaw Boulevard in South Los Angeles, police said. The names of the victims have not been released. Both men were taken to a hospital, where one died and the other was in stable condition with a gunshot wound to the leg, police said. A search was underway for the suspects. A complete description of them was not available.

Monday, 9 July 2012

A Cadillac made especially for 1920’s mobster Al Capone is going on sale for £325,000.

Posted On 15:56 by Reporters 0 comments

Designed to protect the notorious Chicago gangster the car is fitted with 3,000lbs of steel armour, bulletproof windows and painted to look like a police car.

The armour was fitted so rivals would not be able to shoot him as they drove by and the colour scheme of the 1928 Cadillac V-8 "Al Capone" Town Sedan - green with black fenders – mimics the Cadillacs driven by Chicago police and city officials at the time.

Untouchable: A Cadillac which was kitted out with steel armour and bulletproof windows to protect its owner - legendary Chicago gangster Al Capone - is going on sale

Untouchable: A Cadillac which was kitted out with steel armour and bulletproof windows to protect its owner - legendary Chicago gangster Al Capone - is going on sale

It even had a flashing light, siren and the first police-band radio receiver in private hands.

To further protect its precious load the bulletproof glass windows could be wound further than normal to reveal circular holes through which machine guns could be fired.And in case this was not enough to deter any drivers taking up the chase, the rear window of the ride was rigged to drop at an instant so Capone’s henchmen could open fire at any following cars.

The car, which is thought to have been briefly used by President Franklin Roosevelt after Capone was imprisoned for tax evasion, is expected to fetch a six figure sum at auction.

Decked out: Al Capone would have been safe in this one, the 1928 Cadillac V-8 Town Sedan has 3,000lbs of steel armour fitted and was used by President Roosevelt after Capone's imprisonment

Decked out: Al Capone would have been safe in this one, the 1928 Cadillac V-8 Town Sedan has 3,000lbs of steel armour fitted and was used by President Roosevelt after Capone's imprisonment

Machine gun friendly: The bullet proof glass had muzzle sized holes for Capone and his fellow gangsters to fit their guns and even a drop down rear window, pictured, to mow down pursuers

Machine gun friendly: The bullet proof glass had muzzle sized holes for Capone and his fellow gangsters to fit their guns and even a drop down rear window, pictured, to mow down pursuers

Considering his crime – the one he was imprisoned for – Capone would probably have been pleased to know that his old car, being 84-years-old, is classed as a classic and is therefore tax exempt.

After Capone’s imprisonment the vehicle went on to be shown around the world, even making a trip to the UK in the 1950’s displayed at the Southend-on-Sea amusement park and at the Blackpool funfair.

It later entered the collection of the US motor enthusiast John O'Quinn who died last year in a car crash and it is now being sold as part of his estate.

The car is going on sale at the end of August and is expected to fetch £325,000

The car is going on sale at the end of August and is expected to fetch £325,000 at the auction

In their research into the origins of the car, auctioneers uncovered 92-year-old Richard Capstran, whose mechanic father fitted the armour. 

He said Capone's mobsters arrived and told him what they wanted doing.

Mr Capstran said: ‘My dad said “we don't do that kind of work here,” and they said “you do now.”’

The car was then backed into the garage so no one could see what was happening to it.

Mr Capstran said Capone turned up to pay the bill himself and even gave the ten-year-old Mr Capstran a ten dollar note - a small fortune to a young boy at the time.


Alphonse 'Al' Capone was born to Italian immigrants in Brooklyn, New York in 1899.

After being kicked out of school aged 14 he became involved in local teenage gangs and  but moved to Chicago in his early twenties to take advantage of the thriving market for illegal alcohol during the first years of Prohibition.

Capone, imprisoned for tax evasion would probably have a laugh at his old ride being tax exempt

Capone, imprisoned for tax evasion, would probably have a laugh at his old ride being tax exempt

There he ran prostitution rings, illegal gambling halls but made most of his money running speakeasy bars where thirsty Chicago dwellers could get their hands on banned alcohol.

He rose to become the leader of 'The Chicago Outfit' gang, which later became known as 'The Capone Family' and ruled the streets of Chicago from the early 1920's until his capture in 1931.

Despite his gangster ways Capone was a highly visible public figure in Chicago and even opened charity soup kitchens and worked for the safety of the city's children

Capone has been credited with ordering one of the most famous mass murders in 20th century America - the Valentine's Day Massacre - where members of his gang gunned down seven of the rival Moran gang whilst dressed in police uniforms.

The law finally caught up with the mob leader in 1931 when he was sentenced to 11 years in prison for tax evasion.

He spent a majority of his sentence in the famous Alcatraz prison where he was famous for manipulating prison guards.

His health deteriorated in prison and he was no longer capable to run 'The Chicago Outfit' upon his release.

Suffering from neurosyphilis his mental health broke down and when examined a few years after his release he was said to have the mental capacity of a 12-year-old.

Al Capone died in 1947 in Palm Island, Florida

A spokesman for RM Auctions which is selling the Cadillac, said: ‘This is widely considered as one of the most historically significant pre-war American cars.

‘It is liveried in green with black fenders to mirror the Cadillacs supplied to the Chicago police and city officials at the time.

‘It is one of the earliest surviving "bulletproof" cars and was fitted new with heavy glass measuring nearly an inch thick and completely lined with 3,000lbs of steel armour plating.

‘‘It has undergone restoration and is a fabulous piece of history.’

The auction takes place in Monterey, California, on August 20.

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Alleged gang members arraigned on murder charges in Marine veteran's slaying at Antioch bar

Posted On 20:11 by Reporters 0 comments

Four alleged gang members, including two teens being prosecuted as adults, were arraigned Friday on murder charges in connection with the fatal shooting of a Marine veteran at an Antioch bar. Lizandro "Tony" Bertolazzi, a 38-year-old married father of four, was having a drink with a friend at Cruisers Saloon on A Street early in the morning of March 31 when he was killed by gunfire that rang out during a brawl involving the gang members and some other people, police said. The Contra Costa District Attorney's Office this week charged seven people on counts that include murder and conspiracy to felony assault for the benefit of a criminal street gang, deputy District Attorney Andrea Tavenier said. The defendants are Antioch residents Juan Peter Herrera, 22; Giovanni Lopez, 26; Nick Rodriguez, 20; and Alex Gibson, 17; and Pittsburg residents Raymond Wehr, 22; Jamari Ross, 17; and Rudy Cuellar, 22. Wehr is the brother of Armando Curtis Garcia-Wehr, who is serving a 40 years-to-life murder sentence for the September 2007 killing of a 32-year-old Bay Point resident, Walter McDuffie, outside the same bar, when it was known as Club Q. Cuellar and Rodriguez are wanted on warrants. Herrera, Wehr, Gibson and Ross made their first court appearance on Friday and were ordered to return to enter pleas after they have been assigned defense attorneys, Tavenier said. Police said the gang members were kicked out of the Advertisement bar and returned later armed with baseball bats to attack the bar regulars who expelled them. Bertolazzi got up to see what was happening just before he was struck by a stray bullet. Authorities have not released which defendant is suspected of firing the fatal shot. Bertolazzi, of Antioch, was a Marine-trained mechanic who retired at rank of sergeant and was caring for his sons while his wife was stationed in Virgina with the Army. He worked the night shift performing systems maintenance at Kaiser Permanente facilities in Berkeley before meeting a friend at the bar. He didn't know there had been a conflict there earlier in the night.

Gang members found guilty of murdering innocent bystander in Rexdale

Posted On 20:01 by Reporters 0 comments

 A jury found two Jamestown Crips gang members guilty Thursday of first-degree murder in the execution-style slaying of an innocent bystander in Rexdale. After three days of deliberations, the jury decided that Christopher Sheriffe, 22, was the getaway car driver and Awet Asfaha, 27, was the triggerman in the August 2009 fatal shooting of Michael Kim Bishen Golaub on Mount Olive Dr. The 34-year-old Toronto father of five and furniture-maker was visiting a friend’s backyard barbecue when Asfaha gunned him down. It was just the latest episode in a spate of shootings between warring Jamestown Crips and Mount Olive Crips. As Crown attorney Laura Bird described Golaub, he was “simply in the wrong place at the wrong time” and gangs brazenly shoot up the rival’s turf to send a message of intimidation and retribution. Justice Eugene Ewaschuk delayed passing the mandatory life sentence for both men until July 13, so that Golaub’s relatives can deliver victim impact statements. Both murderers must serve 25 years in prison before they can apply for parole. Golaub’s widow, Tedica, wept tears of joy at the verdict, saying, “A great weight has been lifted off my shoulders. These men don’t know how much this murder has messed up our lives. My children’s loving father is gone and he cannot be replaced.” Sheriffe appeared stricken, clutching his sides, as the jury announced its verdict. Asfaha, like Sheriffe, denied that he’s a member of the Jamestown or Doomstown Crips. Sheriffe is alleged to be a leader of the “Hustle Squad,” a hit team within the Jamestown or Doomstown gang. Both men maintained their innocence, with Sheriffe asserting that he was simply an innocent driver whom Asfaha exploited without revealing his murderous plot to him, said Sheriffe’s lawyer Chris Hicks. Asfaha’s version was that he was a passenger in Sheriffe’s car, who got into the back-seat while a mysterious gunman jumped into the front passenger seat after killing Golaub. Asfaha’s lawyer Liam O’Connor said Sheriffe’s witness friends were part of a conspiracy - created by Sheriffe - to point the blame at Asfaha as a killer acting on his own. O’Connor argued his client was merely a passenger in the vehicle after spending a night in a hotel with Sheriffe and two women they had picked up. Bird urged the jury to reject both accused’s accounts, calling them “preposterous and incredible.” She and co-counsel Stephanie Henderson alleged that Sheriffe and Asfaha jointly participated in the callous, calculated shooting.

Two suspected gangsters were killed in two separate incidents in the city yesterday.

Posted On 19:47 by Reporters 0 comments

A gangster was lynched by a mob in Olekasasi Trading Centre,  Rongai after a gang raided Kiandisi ACK Church, waking up the Pastor in charge  who raised alarm. Neighbors responded to the alarm and nabbed one of of the criminals whom they lynched to death.

An amplifier and a piano keyboard were recovered from the lynched suspect whose accomplices managed to escape. In another incident, a suspected robber was shot dead by police minutes after they had robbed a man in a restaurant within the city's Majengo area. Three gangsters stormed into Standard hotel in Majengo and attacked a man who was taking tea and robbed him of Sh3,000 and a mobile phone. Their victim raised alarm attracting the attention of police officers on patrol. One of them was shot dead while his two accomplices were arrested. Nairobi police boss Anthony Kibuchi said that the money, three mobile phones and a toy pistol were recovered from the suspects.

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Ex-Winter Hill Gang slapped with $25G bail

Posted On 07:48 by Reporters 0 comments

The one-time leader of the notorious Winter Hill Gang and an associate were ordered held today on $25,000 cash bail each after their arraignments on attempted extortion and conspiracy charges. Howie Winter, 83, and James Melvin, 70, appeared in Somerville District Court today to answer charges related to the January 2012 incident, the Middlesex District Attorney’s office said. “This type of illegal activity is at the root of many crimes that corrupt the integrity of our communities and undermine public safety by placing citizens in tremendous fear and perpetuating an underworld of crime,” Middlesex District Attorney Gerard T. Leone said. According to authorities, Winter — Whitey Bulger’s predecessor atop the Winter Hill gang — and Melvin told the two alleged victims they had the mob-backed “North End” behind them and threatened them in phone calls, written letters and face-to-face that they would “have some problems” if they didn’t pay up thousands of dollars. “You used someone else’s name and they were so (expletive) aggravated that they wanted to come over and bang you the (expletive) out,” Winter allegedly told the victims in a recorded conversation, according to a police report. “You don’t know who I am? ... There’s no one in the (expletive) country that don’t know who I am.” The victims — identified only as V-1 and V-2 in court documents — told police they had loaned a man $100,000 and after he stopped paying in January, the phone calls and meeting with Winter began. Over the next four months, they were told not to go authorities and that not paying is “not allowed.” This morning, Winter’s and Melvin’s defense lawyers claimed that the two alleged victims are themselves extortionists and that Winter and Melvin were trying to stop an extortion by intervening. Their lawyers indicated they will post bail. They were also ordered to wear GPS bracelets and to surrender their passports. Winter, the former Winter Hill Gang leader, was brought down on state and federal charges in an epic gangland collapse in the 1970s that preceded James “Whitey” Bulger’s rise to power as a mobster and informant.

Accused shooter of two teenagers was being threatened by street gang, defense lawyer says

Posted On 07:36 by Reporters 0 comments

Syracuse teenager accused of shooting two other youths last week thought the victims were armed and members of a street gang that had been threatening him, his defense lawyer said today. Defense lawyer Donald VanStry said Jaquell Greer believed Sherron Jones and Quavon Cosby were reaching for weapons of their own when he shot them about 5 p.m. June 25 in the 400 block of Rich Street. Greer, 17, of Glenwood Avenue, was supposed to be back in Syracuse City Court today for a preliminary hearing on charges of first- and second-degree assault and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon. But VanStry decided to waive Greer's right to that hearing and have the case proceed directly to a grand jury for review. VanStry also said he is waiting for the case to turn into a homicide as one of the victims is reportedly being kept alive on life-support equipment at Upstate University Hospital. Police have said Jones remains in extremely critical condition in the hospital. Court papers filed with Greer's arrest last week indicated Jones suffered a gunshot wound to the right leg that damaged his femoral artery, causing extensive blood loss and the need for artificial life support at the hospital. VanStry said he has been told by authorities that the case against Greer likely will be upgraded to a homicide if Jones is removed from life support and dies. Senior Assistant District Attorney Melinda McGunnigle said she has been provided a similar assessment of Jones' medical condition from police. According to VanStry, Greer contends he was trying to get away from Jones and Cosby, both 16, when he thought he saw them reaching for weapons in the waistbands of their pants. That's when Greer pulled out a handgun and fired shots at the two youths, the lawyer said. VanStry said Greer is not a member of any street gang but was hanging around with some youths who are street gang members. Greer reportedly stole a handgun from the home of one of the gang members and that is why the gang members had been threatening him, leading up to the Rich Street shooting incident, the lawyer said. Greer was being chased by gang members Thursday afternoon when he kicked in the door to a home on Robineau Road to get away from them and ended up being caught inside the residence by police, VanStry said. McGunnigle said that's the story Greer reportedly told police when he was caught and then charged in the earlier shooting. Cosby, the second victim of that Rich Street shooting, suffered a gunshot wound to the right arm. But he ended up being charged with stealing 18 handguns, ammunition and a television during a June 23 break-in at a home on Empire Avenue in Syracuse. Cosby also was due back in City Court today for a preliminary hearing in his burglary case, but defense lawyer Laurin Haddad said the prosecution was expected to have a grand jury take action against Cosby before the end of the day to avoid having to hold that hearing.

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