NEWARK – Three alleged members of a violent Newark street gang were indicted by a federal grand jury Wednesday on charges that include murder, racketeering, kidnapping, robbery, weapons offenses and drug dealing, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.
Farad Roland, 28, Mark Williams, 30, and Malik Lowery, 31, all of Newark, were charged in a 27-count second superseding indictment connection with their alleged membership in The South Side Cartel, a subset of the 793 Bloods gang. Roland is charged with six counts of murder in aid of racketeering, while Williams and Lowery are each charged with one count of murder in aid of racketeering, charges which carry a mandatory minimum penalty of life in prison. The charge is a death-eligible offense subject to a decision by the U.S. Attorney General.
“As the indictment spells out, the gang members indicted today used murder and violence as tools of their criminal trade, punishing disloyal associates, intimidating rivals and silencing those they believed were cooperating with law enforcement,” Fishman said. “They presided over a reign of terror along Hawthorne Avenue for years. These charges finally assign responsibility for more than half a dozen unsolved homicides and represent the latest efforts in our ongoing pursuit of members of violent street gangs.”
“The primary objective of the FBI’s investigation into the criminal enterprise known as South Side Cartel was to disrupt and dismantle one of Newark’s most violent street gangs,” FBI Special Agent in Charge Aaron T. Ford said. “In conjunction with the Newark Police Department and Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, the FBI and its law enforcement partners were successful in accomplishing this mission.”
Newark Police Director Samuel DeMaio stated, “I am pleased that our partnerships with our fellow law enforcement entities, particularly on the federal level, continue to prove effective tools against violent crime and habitual offenders here in Newark. Today’s charges and the severity of the penalties are a testament to our combined resolve to remove these violent predators from our community.”
The charges against the defendants are merely accusations; they are presumed innocent until proven guilty.
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