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April 28, 2016New York, NY, United StatesTransnational Gangs

ICE HSI leads the largest street gang take-down in New York City history

NEW YORK — More than 120 members and associates of two rival gangs operating in the Bronx were indicted in federal court Thursday on charges of racketeering conspiracy, narcotics conspiracy, narcotics distribution, and firearms offenses.

The arrests and indictments follow a year-long investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), with assistance from the New York City Police Department (NYPD), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York.

Members and associates of street gangs 2Fly YGz (2Fly) and the Big Money Bosses (BMB) allegedly led years-long gang wars which resulted in an enormous amount of fatal and non-fatal violence between 2007 and the present in the Northern Bronx, including shootings, stabbings, slashings, beatings, and robberies.

HSI Special Agent-in-Charge Angel M. Melendez said:  “Those arrested today allegedly used violence and fear to intimidate people who live within and around the Eastchester Gardens Public Housing.  These ruthless gang members are allegedly responsible for more than 1,800 shots fired, resulting in eight alleged homicides.  Public safety is important to us, and today our city streets are safer because of the work of HSI agents in our Violent Gang Unit and the work of our federal and local law enforcement partners.”

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said: “Today, we seek to eviscerate two violent street gangs – 2Fly and BMB – that have allegedly wreaked havoc on the streets of the Northern Bronx for years, by committing countless acts of violence against rival gang members and innocents alike.  The gangs’ alleged victims include not only a 15 year-old child stabbed and left to die in the street, as well as a 92 year-old woman shot by a stray bullet in her own home, but also extend to the thousands of residents of Eastchester Gardens and its surrounding neighborhoods terrorized for years by the gangs’ open-air drug dealing and senseless violence.  We bring these charges today so that all New Yorkers, including those in or near NYCHA public housing, can live their lives as they deserve: free of drugs, free of guns, and free of gang violence.”

NYPD Commissioner William Bratton said:  “As alleged, these individuals engaged in open-air drug sales near homes and schools in the Bronx, pushing poison onto our streets.  Allegedly, they also committed numerous acts of violence and at least eight murders in the course of their illicit operations.  This includes the murder of a 92 year-old innocent bystander who was killed by a stray bullet inside her home.  I want to thank the members of the NYPD’s Bronx Gang Squad and our law enforcement partners for dismantling these gangs.  I commend them for their dedication and precision throughout this long-term investigation.”

DEA Special Agent-in-Charge James J. Hunt said:  “The gangs of New York have returned to open air drug markets; brazenly selling marijuana, crack cocaine, powder cocaine and prescription pain medication to drug users in neighborhood parks, abandoned houses, and playgrounds.  A decade long rivalry between two of the Bronx's most violent gangs has resulted in drug related violence, fatal stray bullets and daily intimidation felt by the law abiding residents living in their crosshairs.  Law enforcement has come together again to identify and dismantle these gangs that have plagued our community for too long.”

ATF Special Agent-in-Charge Delano Reid said:  “This investigation demonstrates ATF’s commitment to our communities by partnering with our federal and local counterparts in order to dismantle armed criminal organizations.  These two violent groups, allegedly responsible for multiple shootings, homicides, and other acts of violence, will now have to face the consequences of terrorizing the communities that they lived in.  This should be a lesson to others who are engaged in these types of illegal activities.  Our cooperative law enforcement efforts will continue.”

According to the indictments unsealed today in Manhattan federal court and other publicly filed documents:

2Fly is a subset of the “Young Gunnaz,” or “YG” street gang, which operates throughout New York City.  2Fly is based in the Bronx, within and around the Eastchester Gardens housing development (ECG) and in an area called the “Valley” or the “V,” which is in the vicinity of Gun Hill Road.  ECG is a rectangular complex of residential buildings bordered by Burke, Adee, Yates, and Bouck Avenues, in the middle of which is a playground.  Members and associates of 2Fly control the narcotics trade at ECG, which takes place in the open air at the playground and in apartments at ECG.  2Fly primarily sells marijuana and crack cocaine, but also sells powder cocaine and prescription pills, such as oxycodone.  2Fly members and associates store guns at the playground or in nearby apartments or cars in order to protect the narcotics business and for protection against rival gangs.  The case of United States v. Laquan Parrish et al. charges 57 members and associates of 2Fly, including its “Big Guns,” or leaders: Laquan Parrish, aka “MadDog,” aka “Quanzaa,” Andre Bent, aka “Dula,” and Aaron Rodriguez, aka “Gunz,” aka “Cito.”  2Fly coexists at ECG with a faction of the Bloods street gang called “Sex Money Murder” (“SMM”), which controlled ECG before 2Fly and has allied with 2Fly to prevent others from selling drugs at ECG.  Two of the leaders of SMM at ECG – brothers Preston Pasley, aka “Fresh,” and Terrence Pasley, aka “Smoove” – and several of its members are also charged in the Parrish Indictment.

BMB is a subset of the “Young Bosses,” or “YBz” street gang, which operates throughout New York City.  BMB – whose members also sometimes refer to themselves as the “Money Making Mafia” or “Triple M” – operates primarily on White Plains Road from 215th Street to 233rd Street in the Bronx.  This area is a long stretch of road under a subway train overpass, bordered on each side by single-family homes and local commercial establishments, and in the vicinity of several playgrounds and schools.  BMB’s narcotics trafficking activity is based principally in the vicinity of White Plains Road and 224th Street, an open-air drug spot that is referred to by gang members as the “Forts.”  BMB members also operate a drug spot on Boston Road and Eastchester Road in the Bronx, which they refer to as “B Road.”  BMB members who work principally at the B Road spot typically refer to themselves as “Blamma.”  BMB primarily sells marijuana and crack cocaine, but also sells prescription pills, such as oxycodone.  BMB members and associates store guns in abandoned homes and other places near their drug spots in order to protect their narcotics business and for protection against rivals.  The case of United States v. Nico Burrell et al. charges 63 members and associates of BMB, including its “Big Suits,” or leaders: Nico Burrell, aka “Nico Zico,” and Douglas Mclarty, aka “Q-Don,” aka “Q-Dizzy.”

In addition to numerous non-fatal acts of violence against both rival gang members and innocents, the rivalry between 2Fly and BMB – as well as with other gangs, such as the “Slut Gang,” which is based at the Boston Secor housing development, and the “YSGz,” who are based at the Edenwald housing development – has led to the following murders, among others:

  • The murder of Sadie Mitchell, who was killed in her own home by a stray bullet, at the age of 92, by an associate of BMB in the vicinity of White Plains Road and 224th Street and White Plains Road, on or about October 20, 2009.
  • The murder of Jeffrey Delmore, aka “Famous,” aka “Junior,” who was stabbed to death, at the age of 15, by members of BMB in the vicinity of East Gun Hill Road, on or about May 15, 2010.
  • The murder of Alexander “A.J.” Walters, who was stabbed to death at age 17 by members of 2Fly in the vicinity of 1824 Prospect Avenue in the Bronx, on or about March 8, 2012;
  • The murder of Donville Simpson, aka “Donny,” who was shot to death at ECG at age 17 by members of 2Fly, on or about October 5, 2013.
  • The murder of Keshon Potterfield, aka “Keke,” who was shot to death, at the age of 18, by a member of BMB in the vicinity of 232nd Street between White Plains Road and Barnes Avenue, on or about June 22, 2014.
  • The murder of Fabian Pennant, an associate of 2Fly, who was shot to death by a member of BMB at the age of 24 in the vicinity of Eastchester Road on October 22, 2014.
  • The murder of Jordan Jackwett, who was shot and killed at the age of 23 in the vicinity of Ely Avenue during a shooting between members of 2Fly and BMB on July 26, 2015.
  • The murder of Darren Epps, age 47, who was shot to death by a member of 2Fly in the vicinity of 215th and White Plains Road during a botched robbery on March 13, 2016.

In connection with these arrests, federal and local law enforcement officers also executed court-authorized search warrants at four locations tied to the defendants.  During the arrests and searches, agents and officers seized, among other evidence, seven guns, ammunition, crack, marijuana, counterfeit currency, and drug paraphernalia.  To date, in this case, agents and officers have seized, among other evidence, quantities of marijuana, crack, cocaine, and oxycodone, as well as firearms, ammunition, scalpels, and knives.  During the investigation, agents and officers also intercepted thousands of wiretap calls, during many of which various members and associates of the gangs discussed their racketeering and narcotics activities. 

In a coordinated operation, 78 defendants were arrested in New York Wednesday. Defendants Andre Bent, Robert Pope, James Pilgrim, Jamal Blair, Stephan Clarke, Laquan Parrish, Jafar Borden, Anderson Ross, Barffour Abeberse, Robert Haughton, Shaquille Dewar, Martin Mitchell, Donque Tyrell, Devante Joseph, Daquan Anderson, Jaquan Mcintosh, and Sean Mcintosh were in custody on state charges and were transferred to federal custody today. 

The charges contained in the Indictments are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.