Leaders of the Detroit Highwaymen Found Guilty of Racketeering, Drug, and Weapons Charges
|U.S. Attorney’s Office December 08, 2010|
Four members of the Detroit Highwaymen Motorcycle Club were found guilty today on a variety of charges including racketeering, drug distribution, stolen property, and a weapon charge, United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade announced. These four defendants are the second round of 91 indicted Detroit Highwaymen members and associates who have gone to trial. The first trial resulted in racketeering convictions for six defendants.
Leonard "Bo" Moore, 40, Johnny "JD" Jarrell, 46, Robert "Kwik" Flowers, 39, and Sean "Bones" Donovan 41, were found guilty today by a federal jury in United States District Court before Judge Nancy Edmunds. The jury deliberated for approximately 36 hours before returning the verdict, concluding a month-long trial.
United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade said, "This case represents the importance that federal law enforcement has placed on prosecuting violent gangs. These defendants presented a clear danger to our community, and their conviction will improve public safety."
The Highwaymen Motorcycle Club is headquartered in southwest Detroit and has numerous chapters in the city of Detroit and several cities in southeast Michigan, as well as chapters in other states. It is Detroit's largest, and most violent, motorcycle club with upwards of 100 members. Prosecutors were able to prove the violent nature of the club reflected in a range of criminal activity including armed robbery, attempted murder, conspiracies to kill witnesses, use of firearms during acts of violence, and major drug trafficking including the distribution of large amounts of marijuana, cocaine, and prescription medication.
Evidence at trial also laid out the Highwaymen's very structured organization with a defined chain of command. Two of these defendants, Johnny Jarrell and Robert Flowers, represented some of the upper echelon, or bosses, of the enterprise; while Leonard Moore and Sean Donovan were alleged to have been members within the group. Consequently, three of these men, Leonard Moore, Johnny Jarrell, and Robert Flowers were convicted, under the Racketeering and Corrupt Influenced Organizations (RICO) Act, for participating in the affairs of this criminal organization with ties to interstate activity. Sean Donovan was found not guilty of the racketeering charges, but was found guilty of conspiracy to distribute cocaine.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Violent Crime Task Force, involving numerous state and local agencies from across the state. FBI Special Agent Ted Brzezinski was the lead case agent responsible for handling and coordinating the multi-year investigative effort.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Diane Marion and Christopher Graveline.