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Queens Chronicle

15 reputed gang members charged

DA says group peddled drugs and firearms, among other crimes

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Posted: Thursday, August 29, 2019 10:30 am

Fifteen reputed members of the Hollis-based Henderson New York street gang were charged for the sale of drugs and firearms, as well as other crimes, the District Attorney’s Office announced on Tuesday.

Several of the defendants were charged with attempted murder for the unsuccessful hit on a rival gang member in the vicinity of the Baisley Park Houses last year.

Thirteen defendants are in custody with two others being sought.

Over the course of the investigation, police allegedly recovered 10 illegal firearms and more than a kilo of cocaine. Through court-authorized wiretaps, investigators also gained knowledge that the organization stashed communal gang firearms in various locations, including trap compartments in vehicles as well as a barbecue grill at one individual’s residence. The communal guns were allegedly shared among gang members to use in shootings.

“The defendants are accused of peddling death by trafficking in the sale of illegal drugs and firearms,” said Acting District Attorney John Ryan. “Today’s arrests, targeting the gang’s alleged leaders, will put a significant dent in the drug trafficking and drug-related violence plaguing the area.”

NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill added, “This long-term investigation illustrates the NYPD’s commitment to precision policing and our mission to making the city even safer. The NYPD and the Queens District Attorney’s Office will never tolerate drugs, guns and violence in our communities.”

The office identified the main defendants as Dwayne Bratton, Jerrel Henderson and Hanif Campbell, who are charged, along with three others, in a seven-count indictment with plotting to kill a rival gang member in May 2018. According to the charges, Henderson shot at the rival gang member but failed to hit him.

In another indictment, Wallace Stevenson and Darron Swinnie are accused of being father-and-son drug dealers who distributed cocaine throughout the Hollis area. On one occasion, the pair is charged with selling more than 200 grams — equal to more than seven ounces — of cocaine.

According to the witness intimidation indictment, Ryan said a 23-year-old man was physically attacked during a verbal dispute in a McDonald’s parking lot on Springfield Boulevard in September 2018 by the defendants Isaac Wheeler and Khoran Simmons, both of whom were 16 at the time. The victim suffered bruising to his ribs and eye, as well as a laceration to the cheek that required stitches.

Eight months later, Wheeler, along with two others, are alleged to have stabbed the victim’s brother in an effort to intimidate the September victim into dropping the criminal charges. The stabbing victim suffered a puncture wound to his back that required surgery.

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