The leader of a South Los Angeles street gang blamed for two decades of murders, robberies, extortion, illegal firearms possession, witness intimidation and narcotics trafficking near downtown’s Skid Row faces a possible life term in federal prison when he is sentenced in December.Tyrine “Lil’ C-Bone” Martinez, 36, of Los Angeles, pleaded guilty this week to federal felony charges of racketeering conspiracy, conspiring to commit murder, conspiring to traffic crack cocaine, illegally possessing a firearm and selling crack cocaine near schools, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Martinez was among 72 defendants charged in a federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act — RICO — indictment that targeted the Broadway Gangster Crips, a street gang that claims territory in South Los Angeles.
Over the past several weeks, two other key defendants named in the 213- page indictment have also pleaded guilty.
Tracy “Woody” Harris, 51, of Inglewood, pleaded guilty on Aug. 5 to racketeering conspiracy, conspiring to sell methamphetamine after having been convicted of a prior drug felony, and selling methamphetamine near schools.
Roosevelt “TuTu” Sumpter, 43, of Los Angeles, pleaded guilty on July 27 to racketeering conspiracy, conspiring to distribute crack cocaine, illegally possessing a firearm, and selling crack cocaine near schools.
In a plea agreement filed in Los Angeles federal court, Martinez admitted being a leader of the Gremlin Riderz, a subset serving as the gang’s hit squad, and whose members bore tattoos from the 1984 movie “Gremlins,” prosecutors said.
Martinez also admitted to having conspired with other BGC members to murder a fellow gang member who had provided law enforcement information regarding a 2012 gang shooting that killed an unarmed teenager with no gang affiliation and wounded three others, including a 10-year-old girl.
Harris and Sumpter also face potential life sentences, and mandatory minimum sentences of 13 and 15 years, respectively, federal prosecutors said.
Martinez and Harris are scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 19, Sumpter on Nov. 7.
— City News Service
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