A massive joint investigation continues to produce federal prison sentences for members and associates of a Newark gang that flooded a city neighborhood with fentanyl-laced heroin, committed street robberies and used social media to threaten would-be snitches.
The Famous Boyz, a subset of the Brick City Brim set of the Bloods, used juveniles and social media to dominate the drug trade around the area of South 18th Street and 15th Avenue – an area they referred to as “8 Block,” “18th” or simply “8,” U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito said.
Gang members used social media not only to promote their business but also to threaten any rival gang members or others who considered squealing to authorities, he said.
Investigators acting on a wiretap captured one member in the middle of a robbery while seizing a .40-caliber handgun.
“Damn we just lost all the straps,” another defendant was recorded saying after the weapons seizure. “So all the ratchets [are] gone.”
A federal judge in Newark sentenced Famous Boyz associate Jonathan “Bebo” Garcia, 36, via video conference Tuesday to a little over eight years for his guilty plea to participating in the drug network. Garcia also was sentenced to four years of supervised release.
The day before, Saeed “Nasty” Dawes, 22, was sentenced to a plea-bargained 4¾ years in a federal penitentiary for conspiring to distribute crack and heroin.
Jonathan Hernandez, 25, pleaded guilty last month to similar charges.
Garcia, Hernandez, and Dawes are among 16 reputed “Famous Boyz” members and associates nabbed by federal agents using a wiretap.
All told, 14 of them have pleaded guilty to drug or weapons charges. Seven still await sentencing.
All must serve out their entire sentences because there’s no parole in the federal prison system.
Several law enforcement agencies worked the case under the auspices of the U.S. Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force and the Violent Crime Initiative in Newark.
The principal mission of the OCDETF, Carpenito said, is to “identify, disrupt and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking, weapons trafficking and money laundering organizations, and those primarily responsible for the nation’s illegal drug supply.”
The VCI, meanwhile, works to fight violent crime in and around Newark, he said.
Carpenito specifically thanked the DEA, the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, the Essex County Sheriff’s Office, Newark police, New Jersey State Police and police from Belleville and Livingston for their work on the Famous Boyz takedown.
Handling the case for the government are Criminal Division Deputy Chief Mary E. Toscano and Assistant U.S. Attorney Angelica M. Sinopole of Carpenito’s Organized Crime and Gangs Unit in Newark.
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