U.S. Department of Justice
United States Attorney
District of Maryland
District of Maryland
For Immediate Release
December 1, 2010
Rod J. Rosenstein, United States Attorney
Contact: Vickie E. LeDuc, Public Information Officer
Latin Kings Leader Sentenced To Over 21 Years in Prison for Racketeering Conspiracy
Gang Activities Included Two Attempted Murders, Armed Robbery And Witness Tampering
Greenbelt, Maryland — U.S. District Judge Alexander Williams, Jr. sentenced Francisco
Francis Gabriel Ortis,
King Pone, age 26, of Rockville, Maryland,
today to 262 months in prison, followed by five years of supervised release, for conspiracy to
participate in a racketeering enterprise, in connection with his gang activities as a member and
leader of the Almighty Latin King and Queen Nation (Latin Kings).
The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod
J. Rosenstein; Assistant Attorney General Lanny A Breuer, of the Department of Justice Criminal
Division; Special Agent in Charge Theresa R. Stoop of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms
and Explosives — Baltimore Field Division; Chief J. Thomas Manger of the Montgomery County
Police Department; Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy; Chief Roberto L.
Hylton of the Prince George’s County Police Department; and Prince George’s County State’s
Attorney Glenn Ivey.
U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein said,
The strategy of combining the resources and
intelligence of local, state and federal law enforcement agencies to pursue federal racketeering
charges is proving effective.
As part of his plea, Mr. Ortiz admitted to being the leader of this violent gang, and today said Assistant Attorney General Breuer.
he is seeing the consequences,
By targeting gang
leaders, we weaken a gang’s structure and, ultimately, make safer the communities that gangs
This sentencing demonstrates how serious and determined ATF and our law says ATF’s Special Agent in
enforcement partners are in bringing violent criminals to justice,
Charge Theresa R. Stoop.
We have and will continue to work tirelessly to protect our
communities from senseless acts of gang violence and intimidation. Violent criminals involved in
gang activity have no place within our communities and we will target and remove them to ensure
the public is safe.
According to Ortiz’s plea agreement, the Latin Kings is a violent street gang with
thousands of members across the country and overseas. The Latin Kings have a detailed and
uniform organizational structure, which is outlined — along with various
prayers, codes of
behavior and rituals — in a written
manifesto widely distributed to members throughout the
country. Members of the Latin Kings are also traditionally given
King Names or
Queen which are names other than their legal names, by which they are known to members of
the gang and to others on the street. At the local level, groups of Latin Kings are organized into
tribes, including, the Royal Lion Tribe, MOG, Sun Tribe and UTL.
According to the plea agreement, in mid-2007, Ortiz became a member of the Royal Lion
Tribe in Maryland and the tribe’s Third Crown/Enforcer. Ortiz became the First Crown/Inca of
the tribe in 2008, when members of the Royal Lion tribe formed the MOG tribe. Ortiz led the
MOG tribe until mid-2009, when he was removed from power, then formed and became the
leader of the UTL tribe. As a Latin King leader, Ortiz organized meetings where dues were
collected from members and gang business was discussed. As First Crown/Inca, Ortiz traveled
to Pennsylvania, New York and Florida where he met with other Latin King leaders.
Ortiz admitted that as part of his gang activities, in late summer or fall of 2007, Ortiz and
other Latin King members carried out the armed robbery of a drug dealer at condominiums in
Langley Park, Maryland. According to the plea agreement, one of the Latin Kings knocked on
the drug dealer’s door and when the door opened, Ortiz and two other Latin King members and
associates forced their way into the apartment, each carrying a gun. Once inside, they put their
guns to the heads of the dealer and his young daughter. The Latin King members held the drug
dealer and his daughter at gunpoint in the bedroom while they searched the residence, eventually
stealing powder cocaine.
According to the plea agreement, in December 2007, Ortiz and other Latin King
members and associates participated in the attempted murder of a suspected rival gang member.
When several Latin King members began walking in the wooded area behind a condominium
complex in Langley Park, one or more people - suspected to be MS-13 members — began
shooting at them. After the Latin Kings began running to their cars, Ortiz made them stop, get
out of their cars and retaliate against the suspected MS-13 members. When the Latin Kings
found an individual whom they believed was a member of MS-13, they attacked and stabbed
Ortiz admitted that on January 19, 2009, he and other Latin King members and associates
threatened and attempted to physically assault a Latin Queen, who was the intended victim of an
earlier firebombing. Three days earlier, three members of the Latin Kings had been sentenced
after pleading guilty in that case. Ortiz and other Latin Kings attended the sentencing at U.S.
District Court in Greenbelt. Believing that if the Latin Queen was not a witness or changed her
testimony the three Latin Kings would be able to successfully appeal their convictions for the
firebombing, Ortiz and other Latin Kings put a plan in place to assault the Latin Queen in an
attempt to influence or prevent her testimony. ATF agents learned of the plan and were able to
prevent the attack.
Finally, Ortiz admitted that on July 8, 2009, he and members of the UTL tribe attempted
to murder a person in Germantown, Maryland. The victim was walking on a residential street
with two friends when a car approached them. Several people got out of the car and began
chasing the victim. The victim was eventually caught and struck in the back of the head. The
victim fell to the ground where Ortiz and other Latin Kings beat the victim with a bat, kicked,
punched and stabbed him multiple times. Ortiz was arrested two days after the attack and at the
time of his arrest had three machetes with him.
Six co-defendants previously pleaded guilty to the racketeering conspiracy. All remain in
Mr. Rosenstein and Mr. Breuer thanked the ATF-led RAGE Task Force, including the
Gaithersburg Police Department; the Montgomery County Police Department; Montgomery
County State’s Attorney’s Office; Prince George’s County Police Department; Prince George’s
County State’s Attorney’s Office; the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office, the Maryland
National Capital Park Police — Prince George’s County Division; and the Maryland State Police;
as well as, the New York Police Department; the U.S. Secret Service, and the Internal Revenue
Service — Criminal Investigation, for their assistance in this investigation and prosecution.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended Assistant United States Attorneys
Emily Glatfelter and David Salem, and Lara M. Peirce, a Trial Attorney with the Criminal
Division’s Gang Unit, who are prosecuting the case.