For Immediate Release
Two Men Convicted of Rico, Gun and Drug Charges Following Jury Trial; Third Man Convicted of Marijuana Charges
BUFFALO, N.Y.‐U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. announced today that Thamud Eldridge, 42, aka Damu, Galen Rose, 42, and Kevin Allen, 35, aka Killer Kev, all of Buffalo, NY were convicted of multiple RICO, drug and gun charges following a seven week jury trial before U.S.District Judge Richard J. Arcara.
Eldridge and Allen were convicted of Racketeering Influenced Corrupt Organization (RICO), RICO conspiracy, narcotics conspiracy, possession of firearm in furtherance of violence and violent crime, kidnapping, and robbery. The charges carry a maximum of life in prison and a $250,000. Rose was convicted of distribution and conspiracy to distribute marijuana. Each count carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joseph M. Tripi and Meghan A. Tokash, who handled the prosecution of the case, stated Eldridge and Allen were members and associates of a criminal organization which operated on the East Side of Buffalo from 2003 until 2005. The organization was found by the jury to be a violent group of gang members who specialized in targeting and then robbing drug dealers iand around the City of Buffalo, intending to steal their illegal drugs, money, and jewelry.Eldridge, Allen, and their associates were also accused in the Indictment of invading victim’s homes, threatening residents at gun point for money and other items of value, and kidnapping drugdealers.
One victim who testified for the Government at trial, told the jury that Eldridge and Allen came to his home seeking money and drugs, then forcibly kidnapped him
forcing him into their vehicle with a gun into his neck. They drove the victim to another location in Buffalo where the victim stored his drugs. The dealer said his life was spared only
because he was able to give them over a kilogram of cocaine.
Another Government witness testified that he was robbed of money at gunpoint in the driveway of his family home.
Other victims of a home invasion masterminded by Eldridge testified that their arms and legs were bound with duct tape while they were held at gunpoint‐‐execution style. One victim was handicapped and duct taped to his wheelchair. While Eldridge's associates tried to break into the upper apartment which belonged to a known drug dealer, he casually smoked a cigar. That cigar wascollected by crime scene detectives and later tested for DNA which confirmed Eldridge's presence at the crime scene.
Victims testified about the terror they experienced one told the Court she dialed 9‐1‐1 underneath a couch so Eldridge and his gang members would not detect her attempts at contacting law enforcement. Eldridge and associates escaped before police arrived‐‐only to be caught be his DNA left at the crime scene.
Additionally, the members of the enterprise and their associates distributed quantities of cocaine, crack cocaine, heroin and marijuana, and planned conspired, attempted and committed robberies and murders against other rival drug dealers in order to enhance their street credibility on the East Side of Buffalo.
Defendant Rose participated in an organization between 1999 and 2005 that distributed marijuana in the City of Buffalo.
The jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict on some of the counts that accused Eldridge, Allen, and Rose of murdering known drug dealers Sam Jones, Jr., aka Smokey and Theadrus Laster, aka Flap.
"Today's verdicts represent another step in our continuing efforts to liberate the City from the grip of those who would terrorize it through violence," said U.S. Attorney Hochul. "We will be relentless in our pursuit of any remaining drug dealers and gang members."
The verdict is the culmination of an investigation on the part of the Federal Bureau of Investigation Safe Streets Task Force, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Adam S. Cohen, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Delano A. Reid, the New York State Police, under the direction of Major Steven Nigrelli, and the Buffalo Police Department, under the direction of Commissioner Daniel Derenda.
The defendants are being detained pending sentencing which will be scheduled at a later date.
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