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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Eastern District of New York
For Immediate Release
Breon Peace, United States Attorney
www.justice.gov/usao-edny
Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Members of the "Bully Gang" Charged in Superseding Indictment With Murders, Racketeering, Arson, Narcotics Trafficking, Money Laundering, and Firearms Offenses

A superseding indictment was unsealed today in federal court in Brooklyn charging 26 defendants, including nine members and associates of the violent New York City-based street gang known as the “Bully Gang” with various offenses, including racketeering, murder, drug trafficking, money laundering, and firearms offenses.  The superseding indictment includes new charges against the following members and associates of the Bully Gang for three murders and one attempted murder in Brooklyn, New York and Queens, New York committed in 2018 and 2020:

  • Derrick Ayers, also known as “Dee” is charged with the March 3, 2018 murder of Jonathan Jackson in Brooklyn.
  • Franklin Gillespie, also known as “Spazz” and “Frankie Gino,” is charged with the April 11, 2020 murder of Paul Hoilett in Brooklyn.
  • Gillespie and Anthony Kennedy, also known as “Biggie,” are charged with the April 15, 2020 murder of Mike Hawley in Queens.
  • Demetrius Johnson, also known as “Q,” is charged with the July 18, 2020 attempted murder of a victim in Brooklyn.

The superseding indictment also charged four new defendants, Tiri Brown, also known as “Tyhoe,” Courtney Foster, also known as “Biga,” Avery Goodluck, also known as “Ave,” and Johnson, with narcotics trafficking charges for their role in a scheme to traffic narcotics between New York and Maine. 

Ayers, Gillespie, and Kennedy were previously in custody on the underlying indictment.  Defendants Brown, Foster, Goodluck, and Johnson were arrested today and will be arraigned this afternoon before United States Chief Magistrate Judge Cheryl L. Pollak. 

Breon Peace, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, John B. DeVito, Special Agent-in-Charge, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, New York Field Division (ATF), Keechant L. Sewell, Commissioner, New York City Police Department (NYPD), announced the arrests and charges and Jocelyn Strauber, Commissioner, New York City Department of Investigation (DOI), announced the new charges.

“As demonstrated by the superseding indictment, the dismantling of the Bully Gang is continuing with its members being held accountable for the cold-blooded murders, mayhem, and narcotics trafficking they unleashed upon the district,” stated United States Attorney Peace.  “Reducing gun violence is a high priority for this Office and I commend our prosecutors and law enforcement partners for their relentless efforts to do justice to make our communities safer.”

“This superseding indictment shows the relentless efforts of federal, state, and local partners to hold violent criminals accountable,” ATF Special Agent in Charge DeVito said.  “I commend the hard work of the ATF Joint Firearms Task Force, NYPD, NYC Department of Investigation and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for leaving no stone unturned to charge those who commit senseless acts of violence in the name of loyalty to their gang. ATF’s commitment to protecting the public from violent offenders in collaboration with our partners is unwavering.” 

“Targeting and dismantling gangs and crews, and preventing the violence so often associated with their illegal activities, are among the highest priorities for the NYPD and our law enforcement partners,” stated NYPD Commissioner Sewell. “By focusing on the relatively small number of people responsible for much of the crime and disorder in New York City and beyond, we remain relentless in our efforts to identify and arrest anyone who involves themselves in such senseless acts.”

DOI Commissioner Jocelyn E. Strauber said, "Gang violence and drug trafficking jeopardize communities within and beyond New York City.  DOI and our law enforcement partners are committed to hold accountable those who engage in this very serious criminal conduct.  DOI was pleased to assist the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York and our other law enforcement partners on this important investigation."

As set forth in the superseding indictment and other court filings, members and associates of the Bully Gang used force and violence to promote its power, terrorize communities in multiple states and enrich themselves and their members.  Their members engaged acts of violence including murder, attempted murder, armed robbery, and arson.  The superseding indictment adds charges stemming from the gang’s years-long use of violence and brutality to target its enemies.  As alleged, on August 21, 2017, Bermon Clarke, a leader in one of the charged narcotics conspiracies, set fire to a house in Blaine, Maine with at least two occupants inside.  The March 3, 2018 murder of Jonathan Jackson alleged in the indictment was the culmination of an exchange of gunfire that followed a “gender reveal” party in Brooklyn, New York.  As alleged, during a foot chase along Kings Highway, Ayers repeatedly fired on Jackson at close range.  The murders of Hoilett and Hawley occurred just days apart in April 2020.  As alleged, Gillespie targeted Hoilett, approaching him from behind and firing at the back of Hoilett’s head at point-blank range.  Four days later, Gillespie and Kennedy allegedly lured Hawley to a meeting place in Far Rockaway where Hawley was shot and killed.

As alleged, the Enterprise and its co-conspirators also operated a years-long, sophisticated drug trafficking network responsible for trafficking large quantities of dangerous drugs like cocaine base (“crack”), heroin and fentanyl through New York to Maine, and elsewhere.  The enterprise’s drug proceeds were collected on a regular basis and laundered through financial transactions and the purchase of high-value assets, including jewelry and cars.  During the investigation, law enforcement seized more than $380,000 in cash, more than 15 firearms, six kilograms of cocaine, 600 grams of fentanyl, multiple luxury watches, and four vehicles with concealed “trap” compartments installed.

The charges in the indictment are allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

To date, 53 defendants have been charged as part of the prosecution with 27 pleading guilty.

The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Organized Crime and Gangs Section.  Assistant United States Attorneys Drew G. Rolle, Nicholas J. Moscow, Lindsey R. Oken, and Joy Lurinsky are in charge of the prosecution.   

New Defendants:

TIRI BROWN
Age: 37
Brooklyn, New York

COURTNEY FOSTER
Age: 28
Brooklyn, New York

AVERY GOODLUCK
Age: 32
Brooklyn, New York

DEMETRIUS JOHNSON
Age: 26
Brooklyn, New York

Defendants Previously Indicted:

JESSICA ALMEIDA
Age: 33
Detroit, Maine

KASSIN APPLING (also known as “Killa” and “Kassim”)
Age: 34
Brooklyn, New York

DERRICK AYERS (also known as “Dee” and “Mel”)
Age: 34
Rahway, New Jersey

TYRONE BANKS (also known as “Ty Hitta”)
Age: 23
Brooklyn, New York

JANET BLOOD
Age: 47
Troy, Maine

DAYVON BOSTICK-SAMUELS (also known as “Daytoe”)
Age:  22
Brooklyn, New York

JOHNNY CHILES
Age: 36
Brooklyn, New York

BERMON CLARKE (also known as “G” and “Blue”)
Age: 28
Rahway, New Jersey

MIKE GUSTAVO CONNOR (also known as “Gus”)
Age:  21
Brooklyn, New York

RASHAAD CRAIG (also known as “Skeeno”)
Age:  25
Brooklyn, New York

RONALD DAVIS (also known as “Ronno”)
Age: 29
Brooklyn, New York

QUINTEN DELVALLE (also known as “Q”)
Age:  24
Brooklyn, New York

ELIZABETH DUECASTER
Age: 35
Searsport, Maine

BRITTANY DUNCAN
Age: 26
Bayonne, New Jersey

NEHEMIE ERIL (also known as “Poca”)
Age: 24
Orange, New Jersey

CHRISTINA ESTEVEZ
Age: 31
Queens, New York

LARON ESTRADA (also known as “Yetta”)
Age: 27
Brooklyn, New York

ERICA FAGGIOLE
Age: 44
Maine

ANTONIO FULTON (also known as “Tone”)
Age: 23
Brooklyn, New York

FRANKLIN GILLESPIE (also known as “Spazz” and “Frankie Gino”)
Age: 30
Newark, New Jersey

ROMEO GONZALES
Age:  22
Brooklyn, New York

NIA GOVAN (also known as “Cam” and “V”)
Age: 29
Boston, Massachusetts

KEON GRANT (also known as “Keys”)
Age: 34
Brooklyn, New York

MOELEEK HARRELL (also known as “Moe Money”)
Age: 31
Brooklyn, New York

PAUL HARRIS (also known as “Baldhead”)
Age: 31
Brooklyn, New York

NADINE HEATH
Age:  54
Troy, Maine

ROBERT HOLT (also known as “Ricky” and “Ghost”)
Age: 33
Brooklyn, New York

AMANDA HUARD
Age: 38
Raymond, Maine

LATRELL JOHNSON (also known as “Barlie Buckz”)
Age: 27
Brooklyn, New York

ANTHONY KENNEDY (also known as “Biggie”)
Age: 34
Queens, New York

TYQUAWN LANE (also known as “Bicks” and “Tah Tah”)
Age: 27
Brooklyn, New York

JOANNE LYDEM
Age:  49
Garland, Maine

DARIUS MURPHY
Age:  24
Brooklyn, New York

JESSICA PELKEY
Age: 26
Presque Isle, Maine

CHRISHAWN PENN (also known as “Prince”)
Age: 26
Brooklyn, New York

MICHAEL PEREZ (also known as “White Mike”)
Age: 29
Brooklyn, New York

JOELLE POCHE (also known as “Rico”)
Age: 21
Brooklyn, New York

TERRELL RATLIFF (also known as “Rello”)
Age: 29
Brooklyn, New York

MICHAEL REID (also known as “Half”)
Age:  39
Brooklyn, New York

ISAIAH TERRY SANDIFORD
Age: 21
Brooklyn, New York

JAMEL SMITH
Age: 23
Bronx, New York

CHINASA STRACHAN
Age:  33
Brooklyn, New York

NICOLETTE TOMPKINS
Age: 22
Westfield, Maine

AMANDA WALTON (also known as “A”)
Age: 32
Portland, Maine

DANIELLE WHITE
Age:  47
Swanville, Maine

E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 20-CR-239 (S-8) (BMC)

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