Court upholds convictions and life sentences for North Carolina gang leaders – Reuters

A three-judge panel of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a unanimous published opinion affirming the trial convictions and multiple life sentences of gang leaders who were convicted of racketeering (RICO), drug trafficking and murders gang-related, according to a press release from the United States Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of North Carolina.

“These gang leaders have used gun violence, intimidation and murder to terrorize parts of Raleigh for nearly two decades,” said U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, Michael Easley. “The Court’s decision guarantees that they will spend the rest of their lives behind bars. We will never stop demanding justice for victims of gun violence and we will ensure that sentences reflect the seriousness of the crime committed. »

Demetrice R. Devine, also known as “Respect”, of Garner, and Brandon Jowan Magnum, also known as “B-Easy”, of Knightdale, were convicted in October 2019 of conspiring to participate to racketeering scheme (RICO conspiracy), two counts of murder with intent to racketeering, two counts of murder with a firearm during and in connection with a crime of violence, conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute controlled substances and conspiracy to bribe witnesses.

Get the latest headlines sent to you

In 2020, Devine was sentenced to four consecutive life sentences followed by 240 months in prison and five years of supervised release. Mangum was sentenced to three consecutive life sentences plus 240 months in prison. Devine and Mangum appealed the conviction on numerous counts, all of which were dismissed by the court, according to the statement.

Demetrice Devine is currently serving his life sentence at “Supermax” federal prison in Colorado, as recommended by the court during the sentencing hearing, the statement said.

“Evidence presented at trial and other public documents established that Devine was the leader of the Gangsta Killer Bloods (GKB), then created the Black Mob Gangstas (BMG), which became part of the family organization Donald Gee (DGF),” The Release said. “The BMG/DGF are units of the ‘Bloods’ gang whose members have committed various crimes in the city of Raleigh and particularly in the Haywood Street area.”

Mangum was another high-ranking BMG/DGF member, the statement said. “BMG/DGF members have committed acts of violence to maintain membership and discipline, both within the gang and against non-members,” the statement said. “Members committed acts of violence, including murder, attempted murder and assault, in order to maintain their positions within the gang and to be promoted within the gang’s leadership structure.

“BMG/DGF also held gang meetings to communicate gang information, recruit members, impose penalties, and collect gang dues from each BMG/DGF member for the benefit of the BMG/DGF organization. A portion of the dues was saved and used locally in what was called a “community rent box” (CRB), while another portion was sent up the chain of command to gang leaders in Virginia and to New York,” the statement continued. “BMG/DGF members have been allowed to earn their money through various methods including, but not limited to, theft, fraudulent schemes and drug distribution. The money was used locally for loans to gang members, for drugs, for firearms, for gifts and cell phones for high-ranking members who were in prison. Devine ordered that people selling narcotics in and around Haywood Street who were not BMG/DGF members also be required to pay gang dues in order to continue their drug sales in BMG/DGF-controlled territory. . People who did not pay gang dues were at risk of being robbed, assaulted or murdered.

According to the release, in his leadership position, Devine ordered his gang members to shoot Adarius Fowler, a 16-year-old rival gang member who died of gunshot wounds, and ordered a gang member to shoot a person who had provided information to law enforcement regarding Fowler’s murder. While that person was recovering from those gunshot wounds in the hospital, Devine ordered that the person be killed, the statement said.

” Guess presided over the initiation of a gang ‘beat up’ of a BMG/DGF gang member and personally assaulted another gang member whose loyalty he questioned,” the statement read. ” Guess conspired with other gang members to silence and threaten gang members who had received subpoenas to testify in federal proceedings.

The statement also said that Mangum, along with other gang members, conspired to shoot Rodriguez Burrell, an 18-year-old rival gang member, because he refused to pay money to BMG/DGF. Burrell was shot several times in the presence of his father and died from his injuries.

Upholding the convictions and sentences, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals found that “Devine’s desire for ‘respect’ at all costs led to the murder of Adarius Fowler, while the insatiable desire for ‘money “Gangstas led to the execution of Rodriguez Burrell. . This collective malevolence . . . led to a neighborhood where so many people deserved so much better and where respect for the elderly and opportunities for the young no longer existed.

Both Devine and Mangum sold drugs on behalf of BMG/DGF, according to the statement. The jury found Devine guilty of conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute more than 280 grams of cocaine base (crack), more than 500 grams of cocaine and a quantity of marijuana. Devine frequently provided drugs to lower-ranking gang members for later distribution in the community, the statement said. The jury found Mangum guilty of conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute a quantity of cocaine and marijuana.

The pursuit of Devine and Mangum was part of an operation by the Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OECDTF) targeting violent gang members and drug dealers in Raleigh.

Easley made the announcement after the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals issued its opinion. The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Raleigh Police Department conducted the investigation with assistance from the North Carolina Department of Public Safety, Wake County Sheriff’s Office, Raleigh/Wake City-County Bureau of Identification, United States Marshal’s Service, from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the North Carolina Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Dena King (now U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina) and Scott Lemmon (now Deputy Criminal Chief of the Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force, or OECDTF, Office of the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina) pursued this case with Christina Taylor in the Organized Crime and Gangs Section of the Criminal Division of the U.S. Department of Justice.

Assistant US Attorney Kristine Fritz defended the case in the Court of Appeals.

READ MORE NEWS HERE.

About Jessica J. Bass

Check Also

Court ruling could release killer of Jennifer Mullin, 17, in Weymouth

WEYMOUTH — Joseph Mullin’s family had a small sense of closure in 1998, when a …