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Feds: Bronx gang killed 2 in Yonkers

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara is shown in this

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara is shown in this undated file photo. Photo Credit: Charles Eckert

Members of a Bronx-based gang sold drugs, engaged in brutal turf wars and murdered their rivals -- including two men in Yonkers -- federal prosecutors alleged in an indictment revealed Wednesday.

The indictment detailed eight years of organized criminal activity by the 40 members of the Bronx Trinitarios gang, according to U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.

Federal prosecutors said the gang members -- who went by names like Fresh, La Percha and Kiki -- sold cocaine, crack, marijuana and prescription painkillers like oxycodone. They aggressively defended their perceived turf, according to the indictment, planning robberies and ordering hits against rivals in gangs like the Bloods, Crips, Latin Kings and Dominicans Don't Play, also known as DDP.

The gang members murdered nine rivals and planned the murders of two dozen others, prosecutors said.

Two of those slayings occurred in Yonkers. On Sept. 3, 2005, six alleged gang members killed 16-year-old Ka'Shawn Phillips on Saratoga Avenue, prosecutors said. A Yonkers man already is serving a sentence of 25 years to life for that murder after being convicted in 2006 on state charges prosecuted by the Westchester County district attorney's office.

During that trial, prosecutors argued that Juan Martinez of Yonkers killed Phillips in retaliation for a fistfight at a basketball court. However, federal prosecutors said the murder was gang-related and allege another man pulled the trigger.

Violence by the Trinitarios spilled over into Yonkers again on Sept. 4, 2009, when four members robbed and killed David Avila-Gomez on Mount Carmel Place, prosecutors said. Avila-Gomez, 21, was standing outside his apartment building when he was gunned down, allegedly by Trinitarios members.

Wednesday's indictment is the third against the gang since 2009. Since the first arrests that year, federal authorities have charged 119 alleged members of the Trinitarios. Most of those cases are still pending.

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