A longtime leader of a South Los Angeles street gang was arrested Wednesday on a federal grand jury indictment alleging he engaged in a decades-long conspiracy to murder rivals, extort local business and distribute narcotics, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced.
Paul Gary Wallace, 54, of South Los Angeles was scheduled to be arraigned on the indictment Wednesday afternoon in Los Angeles federal court.
Wallace is charged with one count each of conspiracy to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act and using a firearm in furtherance of a violent crime resulting in death, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
If convicted of all charges, Wallace would face up to life in federal prison and be death penalty eligible.
According to the indictment, Wallace, also known as Doc and Uncle Bill, was a member of the gang for more than 30 years and rose to become the leader and most influential member of a series of cliques responsible for control over territory in South Los Angeles.
The indictment describes how Wallace allegedly maintained his control over the gang through violence and intimidation. Prosecutors allege he murdered and conspired to commit murder to enhance the gang’s violent reputation, to enhance his status within the gang, to retaliate against rivals and to enforce discipline within the gang.
The indictment alleges Wallace’s involvement in two murders. On Feb. 9, 2003, he allegedly repeatedly shot a fellow gang member who had publicly disrespected him. On Nov. 13, 2014, Wallace allegedly ordered the murder of a rival gang member, drove co-conspirators to the victim’s house and personally handed one of them a firearm, which was used to murder the victim. The murder weapon, an AK-47-style assault rifle, was later found in Wallace’s van, federal prosecutors allege.
Wallace’s other criminal conduct allegedly included selling drugs in gang territory, extorting local businesses, presiding over robberies and engaging in other acts of violence, including intimidation, assaults and shootings against the gang’s rivals, according to the indictment.