Longtime South Los Angeles Gang Leader Convicted in Racketeering Case


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LOS ANGELES (CNS) - A federal jury today found a longtime senior leader of a South Los Angeles-based street gang guilty of federal criminal charges for conspiring to commit racketeering through various criminal acts including murder, extorting local businesses and the distribution of narcotics.

Paul Gary Wallace, 56, of South Los Angeles, was found guilty of one count of conspiracy to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act and one count of using a firearm in furtherance of a violent crime, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

U.S. District Judge André Birotte Jr. scheduled a July 29 sentencing hearing, at which time Wallace will face up to life in federal prison.

According to evidence presented at his 11-day trial, Wallace 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 the gang's cliques responsible for control over territory in South Los Angeles.

Wallace maintained his control over the gang through violence and intimidation. He murdered and conspired to commit murder to enhance the gang's reputation, to enhance his status within the gang, to retaliate against rivals, and to enforce discipline within the gang, according to evidence presented in Los Angeles federal court.

As a gang leader, Wallace's other criminal conduct 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 rivals.

The jury specifically found that, on Nov. 13, 2014, Wallace participated in the murder of a rival gang member. The murder weapon, an AK-47- style assault rifle, was later found in the defendant's van.

The jury did not find that Wallace committed the February 2003 murder of another rival, prosecutors noted.

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