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OC gang member sentenced in connection to Mexican Mafia racketeering case – Orange County Register

Orange County gang member implicated in federal Mexican Mafia racketeering after police arrested him as he prepared to assault another man on Christmas Day 2017 on the orders of a gang leader, was sentenced Monday to four years in federal prison.

Alex Gonzalez, 33, was also ordered to spend three years on supervised release following his release from prison after reaching a plea deal in which he admitted to having a .9mm handgun loaded with hollow-point bullets during of a traffic stop by the police in 2017.

Gonzalez was about to carry out an assault ordered by Johnny Martinez, who was the leader of a local street gang at the time and has since become the alleged leader of the Orange County faction of the Mexican Mafia, according to court filings.

From a jail cell, Martinez is accused of contacting Omar Mejia, his alleged “shooter,” to order an attack on a man with whom Martinez was “using drugs and making advances toward” Martinez’s girlfriend, they said. prosecutors wrote in court filings.

Investigators “intercepted” a call between Martinez and Mejia in which Martinez asked Mejia to ask “Hitman” — which prosecutors identified as Gonzalez’s street name — to attack the man he believed to have spent time with Martinez’s girlfriend, according to charging documents.

Officers spotted Gonzalez in a car heading toward the would-be victim’s home, prosecutors wrote. During a car stop, Gonzalez resisted police and “a struggle ensued,” during which a gun fell from his waistband, prosecutors wrote.

In 2022, Martinez, alleged high-level associates of the Mexican Mafia, including Mejia, and alleged lower-level gang members with alleged ties to the Mexican Mafia, including Gonzalez, were named in a federal indictment alleging that people linked to the powerful power based in prison. The Mexican Mafia committed murder, attempted murder, and various drug and gun crimes.

Made up of veteran Latino street gang members, the Mexican Mafia exercises extensive control over gang activities throughout Southern California. Those who sell drugs in gang-controlled territories or traffic narcotics in and out of prisons are “taxed” by Mexican Mafia leaders. And those who ignore or refuse to follow the rules or orders of the Mexican Mafia are often targets of assault and even death.

In a sentencing memo, prosecutors wrote that Gonzalez previously ransacked the home of a man who allowed his girlfriend to stay at his home. They also described Gonzalez in 2015 punching a girlfriend in the face while she was holding the couple’s 1-month-old baby.

“The defendant’s history and behavior demonstrate a prompt and immediate willingness to act violently and a persistent lack of respect for the law,” prosecutors wrote.

Gonzalez’s defense attorney wrote in his own sentencing memo that between his arraignment in 2017 and his indictment in 2022, Gonzalez had changed his life. Gonzalez overcame the drug addiction he had struggled with since age 13, wrote his lawyer, left the gang life behind and became a plumber.

The defense attorney argued that Gonzalez grew up poor in a neighborhood infested with gangs and drugs. His mother abandoned Gonzalez when he was 2, the defense attorney wrote, and his father left when he was 4. Gonzalez later took on the same street nickname “Hitman” that his father had used when he was a member of the same group. gang, added the defense lawyer.

California Daily Newspapers

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