Department of Justice
For Immediate Release
Thirty-Two Charged in Manhattan Federal Court for Narcotics and Firearm Offenses
Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Delano A. Reid, Special Agent in Charge of the New York Office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”), and William J. Bratton, the Commissioner of the New York City Police Department (“NYPD”), announced the unsealing this morning of two indictments, charging a total of 32 defendants with participating in conspiracies to distribute and possess with intent to distribute large quantities of crack cocaine in around the Lincoln Housing Development in East Harlem, New York (the “Lincoln Houses”). Six defendants are also charged with possessing and using firearms in connection with one of the narcotics trafficking conspiracies. Twenty-three defendants were taken into custody today and are expected to be presented in Manhattan federal court later today before U.S. Magistrate Judge James C. Francis IV. Five defendants are incarcerated in various locations in New York and are expected to be transported to the Southern District of New York within the next two weeks. Four defendants remain at large.
Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said: “As alleged, these defendants blanketed the entire expanse of the Lincoln Houses with their round-the-clock drug dealing operation, using guns and violence to protect it. All New Yorkers, including the residents of NYCHA housing, are entitled to live in neighborhoods free of drugs and the inevitable violence that comes with it. Our actions today, with our partners at the ATF and NYPD, are a step toward making that a reality for the residents of the Lincoln Houses in East Harlem.”
ATF Special Agent in Charge Delano A. Reid said: “These defendants attempted to consolidate power over narcotics distribution in and around the Lincoln Houses, turning that community into an open air drug market. In the process they are alleged to have had access to firearms and to have engaged in acts of violence to protect and maintain their drug business. Today we say no more. The members of this criminal organization thought that they could use firearms and violence to shield themselves and their illicit activities. Instead, they have made themselves the targets of ATF and our law enforcement partners. Today’s arrests will help to preserve dignity and restore safety for law abiding residents of the Lincoln Houses and surrounding communities. To those that think they can use firearms and violence as tools to further their criminal ambitions, let this be a warning that we in law enforcement will be at the ready to ensure that your fate is the same as those arrested today. ATF would like to thank the NYPD and United States Attorney’s Office for their professionalism and perseverance during this long term investigation.” NYPD Commissioner William J. Bratton said: “This long term investigation targeted key members of an East Harlem gang who, as alleged, distributed crack cocaine and engaged in rampant gun violence, willfully disregarding the safety of residents living in the Lincoln Houses. I commend both my NYPD detectives and our federal partners, whose diligence and perseverance have disrupted this criminal operation.”
As alleged in the indictments and in other documents previously filed in Manhattan federal court1:
The New York City Housing Authority (“NYCHA”) operates, among others, a housing development in the East Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan, New York: the Lincoln Houses, spanning an area between East 132nd Street and East 135th Street to the North and South, and Park Avenue and Fifth Avenue, to the East and West.
From at least in or about 2008, up to and including in or about 2016, in the Southern District of New York and elsewhere, RASHEED BAILEY, a/k/a “Ciroc,” WILLIAM BRYANT, a/k/a “Kenny,” KEVIN CHAVIS, JEFFREY CHILDS, a/k/a “Pap,” a/k/a “CJ,” TYRONE GLADDEN, a/k/a “Ty Boogie,” a/k/a “Ty Zooted,” TRAVIS HARRY, a/k/a “Trav Game,” RICHARD HILL, MICHAEL JOHNSON, a/k/a “Air,” KEVIN LEWIS, a/k/a “Ice,” DONTE McGILL, TORELL NIUELDER, a/k/a “Young,” a/k/a “Relli,” TUQUAN ROGERS, a/k/a “Tay,” DONALD ROSE, JAMAL RUSSEL, a/k/a “Mally,” LUKE RYANT, a/k/a “Berger,” KEVIN SAXON, a/k/a “Sax,” ANDREW SINGLETON, a/k/a “Drew,” SEON THOMAS, a/k/a “Cee,” a/k/a “Goon,” HENRY TRENTON, a/k/a “Kay,” a/k/a “Kels,” RENE VELEZ, a/k/a “White Boy,” TREVOR WATSON, a/k/a “Trev Wild,” and TYLER WILLIAMS, a/k/a “Ty Cracks,” and others known and unknown, conspired to distribute significant amounts of crack cocaine, in and around, among other places, the “West Side” of Lincoln Houses. Specifically, these defendants sold narcotics most frequently on public streets and inside public housing developments between East 132nd Street and East 135th Street, to the North and South, and between Madison Avenue and Fifth Avenue, to the East and West.
During the same time period, KAREEM ALLEN, a/k/a “Rocket,” HAROLD HILL, a/k/a “Dee Wee,” AARON JOHNSON, a/k/a “A,” ANTOINE MITCHELL, a/k/a “Red,” JEREL POOL, a/k/a “Nast,” DEREK SMITH, a/k/a “Ice,” MARK SMITH, NAJHEA SMITH, a/k/a “Boogz,” QWAME THOMAS, a/k/a “Afro,” BERNARD WALKER, a/k/a “M,” the defendants, and others known and unknown, conspired to distribute significant amounts of crack cocaine in and around, among other places, the “East Side” of Lincoln Houses. Specifically, these defendants sold narcotics most frequently on public streets and inside public housing developments between East 132nd Street and 135th Street, to the North and South, and Park Avenue to Madison Avenue, to the East and West.
1 As the introductory phrase signifies, the entirety of the text of the Indictments, and the description of the Indictments set forth herein, constitute only allegations, and every fact described should be treated as an allegation.
The narcotics organizations operating on the West Side and the East Side of the Lincoln Houses distributed crack cocaine 24 hours each day, seven days each week.
In addition, members of the West Side organization had access to firearms and engaged in acts of violence in order to, among other reasons, protect and maintain their drug business, including JEFFREY CHILDS, a/k/a “Pap,” a/k/a “CJ,” TUQUAN ROGERS, a/k/a “Tay,” JAMAL RUSSEL, a/k/a “Mally,” LUKE RYANT, a/k/a “Berger,” SEON THOMAS, a/k/a “Cee,” and TREVOR WATSON, a/k/a “Trev Wild.”
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All of the defendants face mandatory minimum prison terms ranging from 10 years to 15 years, and maximum terms of life in prison.
The statutory maximum sentences are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentences imposed on the defendants will be determined by the Court.
A chart containing the names of the defendants who were arrested today, and the charges and maximum penalties they face, is attached.
Mr. Bharara praised the outstanding investigative work of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the New York City Police Department.
The prosecution is being handled by the Office’s Violent and Organized Crime Unit. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Amanda Houle, Hadassa Waxman, and Michael Gerber are in charge of the prosecution.
The charges contained in the Indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
|Conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute 280 grams and more of crack cocaine.||Rasheed Bailey, William Bryant, Kevin Chavis, Jeffrey Childs, Tyrone Gladden, Travis Harry, Richard Hill, Michae4l Johnson, Kevin Lewis, Donte McGill, Torrell Niuelder, Tuquan Rogers, Donald Rose, Jamal Russel, Luke Ryant, Kevin Saxon, Andrew Singleton, Seon Thomas, Henry Trenton, Rene Velez, Trevor Watson, Tyler Williams, Kareem Allen, Harold Hill, Aaron Johnson, Antoine Mitchell, Jerel Pool, Derek Smith, Mark Smith, Najhea Smith, Qwame Thomas and Bernard Walker||
Life in prison
Mandatory minimum: 10 years in prison
|Possession of a firearm in furtherance of a narcotics trafficking offense||Jeffrey Childs, Tuquan Rogers, Jamal Russeel, Luke Ryant, Seon Thomas and Trevor Watson||
Life in Prison
Mandatory minimum: 5 years, to be imposed consecutively to any other sentence.