November 20, 2015

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Announces Conviction of Jamal Smalls for Murder, Narcotics Trafficking, and Firearms Charges

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that JAMAL SMALLS, a/k/a “Poo Black,” a/k/a “Machiavelli,” a/k/a “Mack,” was found guilty today of the July 26, 2012, drug-related murder of Doneil White; leading a narcotics trafficking conspiracy that distributed powder cocaine, crack cocaine, and heroin in 2012 and 2013; and using and discharging firearms in connection with that narcotics conspiracy, following a two-week jury trial before United States District Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald.

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said: “Jamal Smalls led a violent drug trafficking crew and, as the jury found, was responsible for murder as well as other mayhem and drug peddling. Thanks to the FBI and the NYPD, this threat to public safety is off the streets and awaiting sentencing for his crimes.”

According to the Superseding Indictment, evidence admitted at trial, and statements made at court proceedings and in court filings:

JAMAL SMALLS, a/k/a “Poo Black,” a/k/a “Machiavelli,” a/k/a “Mack,” was a high-ranking member of the Bloods. In 2012 and 2013, SMALLS ran a drug trafficking crew that operated in and around the John Adams Houses in the Bronx, New York. SMALLS and his crew sold large quantities of powder cocaine, crack cocaine, and heroin in and around the housing project, as well as in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia.

In 2000, SMALLS was convicted for first degree manslaughter in New York State. Throughout SMALLS’s term of incarceration, he received narcotics from his brother and persons working on behalf of the crew to distribute within the state prison system. In April 2012, SMALLS was released from New York State prison. After his release, SMALLS began to lead the crew with his brother, participating in large-quantity narcotics transactions in the Bronx and out-of-state.

SMALLS was also involved in repeated violence committed in connection with the crew’s drug trafficking. On July 18, 2012, SMALLS tried to shoot Doneil White, a rival drug dealer, but missed; SMALLS, however, hit a bystander in the back outside of the Johns Adams Houses. A week later, on July 25, 2012, SMALLS again shot at Doneil White in the John Adams Houses, but missed. Early the next morning, on July 26, 2012, SMALLS paid a member of his crew $10,000 to shoot Doneil White in a stairwell at the John Adams Houses. White died a few days later as result of his severe injuries.

Following his arrest in August 2012, and while in pre-trial detention, SMALLS continued to lead the narcotics conspiracy, by, among other things, giving directives to members of the crew through telephone calls and in-person visits.

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SMALLS, 39, of the Bronx, New York, was convicted of (a) conspiracy to distribute and possess with the intent to distribute 280 grams and more of crack cocaine, one kilogram and more of heroin, and five kilograms and more of cocaine; (b) using, carrying, possessing, and discharging firearms in connection with that narcotics conspiracy; and (c) the drug-related murder of Doneil White. In total, SMALLS faces a maximum sentence of life in prison and a mandatory minimum sentence of 45 years in prison. SMALLS is scheduled to be sentenced on March 10, 2016, at 2:30 p.m., before Judge Buchwald. The maximum potential sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge.

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara thanked the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the New York City Police Department for their continued outstanding work in this investigation. Mr. Bharara also thanked the Bronx District Attorney’s Office for their valuable assistance with the investigation.

The case is being prosecuted by the Office’s Violent & Organized Crime Unit. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kan M. Nawaday, Joshua A. Naftalis, and Drew Johnson-Skinner are in charge of the prosecution.