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on the border line between the US and Mexico

Thursday, May 2, 2024

Aryan Brotherhood Leaders Convicted of RICO, Murder, and Drug Trafficking with Mexican Mafia

"Socalj" for Borderland Beat

Ronald "Renegade" Yandell and Billy Sylvester.

On June 6, 2019, a criminal complaint was unsealed that charged 16 members and associates of the Aryan Brotherhood (AB), a prison-based gang, following a long-running investigation into drug trafficking and murders inside and outside of California’s prisons.

Following a 9-week trial before Chief U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller, three members of the Aryan Brotherhood prison gang were found guilty of racketeering activity that included murder and drug trafficking, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

According to court documents and evidence produced at trial, between 2011 and 2016, AB members and associates engaged in racketeering activity, committing multiple acts involving murder, conspiracies to murder, and drug trafficking crimes. Yandell and Sylvester oversaw a significant heroin and methamphetamine trafficking operation from their shared cell.


Using smuggled-in cellphones, Yandell and Sylvester directed murders, drug trafficking in Sacramento and other California cities, and other criminal acts, while controlling the membership of the AB. Troxell was a leader of the AB and had significant authority over the enterprise, including resolving disputes among members and approving the murder of current or former members.

A federal jury found California State Prison Sacramento inmate Ronald "Renegade" Yandell, 61, guilty of 1 count of murder in aid of racketeering for the murder of Hugo Pinell, conspiracy to conduct the affairs of an enterprise through a pattern of racketeering activity; 5 counts of conspiracy to commit murder in aid of racketeering for the murders of Kenneth Johnson, James Mickey, Paul Diaz, Michael Trippe, and Doug Maynard; 2 counts of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine and heroin; 5 counts of distribution of heroin; and one count of distribution of methamphetamine.

The jury found California State Prison inmate Billy Sylvester, 55, guilty of murder in aid of racketeering for the murder of Ronald Richardson, conspiracy to conduct the affairs of an enterprise through a pattern of racketeering activity, conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine and heroin, and distribution of methamphetamine.

The jury found California State Prison Sacramento inmate Danny Troxell, 71, guilty of conspiracy to conduct the affairs of an enterprise through a pattern of racketeering activity and conspiracy to commit murder in aid of racketeering for the murder of James Mickey.

Co-Defendant Murder Plots

Prosecutors presented evidence that at least two of the co-defendants had plotted to murder each other in recent years, with one of the alleged murder plots occurring just last summer.

Attorneys for alleged Aryan Brotherhood commissioners Danny Troxell and Ronald “Renegade” Yandell had both filed motions to prevent them from facing a jury together. Troxell’s attorneys painted him as something of a peacemaker. They describe him as a deliberative man who resisted joining murder plots orchestrated by Yandell and others, and who even used his influence to protect would-be Aryan Brotherhood targets from harm, including one man who was eventually killed anyway.

Tantamount to Troxell’s defense is an allegation by prosecutors that one of his co-defendants, Patrick “Big Pat” Brady, tried to have him killed last summer after Troxell’s lawyers filed a motion indicating they would shift blame toward Yandell. Brady interpreted this as Troxell “smutting up” a fellow gang member, according to a motion filed by Troxell’s defense team.

“Today’s convictions further our effort to dismantle a violent criminal enterprise run from inside California prisons,” said U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert. “The Aryan Brotherhood controlled its members, associates, and others both inside and outside prison walls, ordering multiple murders and running a drug trafficking operation that spanned counties and states. We will continue to use every law enforcement tool to protect the communities plagued by the violence and criminal activities of the Aryan Brotherhood.”

“Prior convictions and lengthy prison sentences didn’t alter the defendants’ disrespect for the law and public safety. They continued to commit brutal murders and other heinous crimes from behind bars, all while coordinating the distribution of drugs into the community for financial gain,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Brian M. Clark. “These convictions deal a significant blow to the Aryan Brotherhood leadership and underscores our commitment to tackle violent criminal enterprises from the top down.”

Federal Aryan Brotherhood

Yandell, Troxell, and Sylvester are scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Mueller at a date to be set in the future. Defendants Yandell and Sylvester face mandatory life sentences based on their convictions for murder in aid of racketeering. Defendant Troxell faces a maximum sentence of life in prison based on his RICO conspiracy conviction.

Yandell, Troxell, and Sylvester are currently serving life sentences in California. Yandell, under the Elderly Program, was eligible for parole in 2021 but he has waived his right to a parole hearing each year since. Troxell was initially up in 1995 but has been denied parole. Sylvester is serving life without the possibility of parole.

With these federal convictions and additional life sentences likely; they will begin serving time within the federal prison system. Decades ago, authorities looked to convict prison gang leaders on federal RICO charges in attempts to strip their power in the California prison system by moving them across the country into federal institutions.

However, the opposite effect occurred with gangs establishing federal branches. The Aryan Brotherhood established the California Commission and a Federal Commission. These are the only two branches that the gang recognizes. Other prison gangs outside of California, such as the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas are not recognized by the original AB prison gang.

Ronald Yandell became a member of the Federal Aryan Brotherhood program while serving a 10-year federal prison sentence for meth trafficking in the 1990s. Shortly after his 2001 prison release, he committed a double homicide in Costa County, California, and was sentenced to life in California state prison in 2004. His status grew quickly in the California prison system, having been part of the federal system.

He eventually became part of the AB's Three-Man Commission, along with Danny Troxell, and Edgar "The Snail" Hevle.

2019 Federal Indictment

The investigation had started in 2014, targeting members of the Vallejo-based gang Family Affiliated Irish Mafia (FAIM). Heroin buys by an undercover DEA Agent from female FAIM member Jeanna Quesenberry revealed that she was communicating directly with AB member Ronald "Renegade" Yandall for trafficking heroin and meth.

Authorities obtained a warrant to tap Yandell’s contraband phone in the summer of 2016, and say they recorded upward of 1,800 calls, providing evidence about murder plots, heroin and meth trafficking, and directing other crimes and the gang's business.

Yandell was charged as a leader of the Yandell-Sylvester DTO (Drug Trafficking Organization) along with his Folsom cellmate, fellow AB member William "Willie from Norco" Sylvester. The ring was caught with 43 cell phones.

Travis Burhop had been distributing drugs in Calipatria prison, more effectively than the Mexicans in the same prison. Yandell told him that killing any white inmate who bought drugs from another race would keep people in line. Burhop said that Mexican inmates owed him money for drugs.

Despite their name and many of the gang's tattoos and insignias, the Aryan Brotherhood is currently not considered to be a racist gang. Several key leaders within the gang have Native American and Jewish ancestry. The group became more business-minded, dealing with Mexican Mafia members to traffic drugs. 

The AB has been at odds with racist white-skinhead gangs looking to usurp the power of The Brand in prisons for several years.
Sylvester zip-tied following his killing of fellow inmate Ronald Richardson in 2011.

Billy Sylvester had gained membership to 'The Brand' in 2011 following his killing of Folsom inmate Ronald Richardson in their small exercise yard. Richardson was a member of the skinhead gang USAS (United Society of Aryan Skinheads). The USAS had defied AB member leadership and were actively attempting to form an alliance of skinhead prison gangs that could rival the Aryan Brotherhood as an independent white gang and remove their base of power in various California prisons. AB members were given the green light and expected to attack any USAS and allied gang members.

At the outset of this investigation, the following defendants were prison inmates with Yandell, Troxell, and Sylvester, serving life sentences:

Travis Burhop, 51, pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing.
Brant Daniel, 49, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to life in prison.
Pat Brady, 53, pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing.
Jason Corbett, 52, pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing.

Additional individuals charged in the case include the following:

Donald "Popeye" Mazza, 53, pleaded guilty on June 15, 2022, and is scheduled for sentencing on May 6, 2024. Mazza was a founder of the PENI white supremacist gang based in Long Beach and Orange County, California. He became an AB member in prison but converted to Christianity and cooperated with authorities a few years ago.

Samuel Keeton, 45, of Menifee, pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing.
Jeanna Quesenberry, 57, of Sacramento, pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing.
Kristin Demar, 49, of Citrus Heights; pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing.
Justin Petty, 42, of Los Angeles, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 10 years and 10 months in prison.

Charges are pending against Kevin MacNamara, 44, of La Palma, and Kathleen Nolan, 69, of Calimesa.

Two previously charged defendants are deceased.

"Mosca" Torres' Murder

One of those late defendants was the sole non-AB member. Michael "Mosca" Torres, the Mexican Mafia member who once controlled the Los Angeles County Jail system, was murdered by two fellow Eme members last year. Torres was attacked at California State Prison, Sacramento, (also known as 'New Folsom') where he was serving 133 years to life for attempted murder, conspiracy, weapons offenses, and witness tampering.

Prison officials identified the assailants as Ray "Cisco" Martinez, 49, and Juan Angel Martinez, 47. The men, who are not related, are both serving life in prison for murder and other crimes. According to law enforcement officials, both attackers are Mexican Mafia members.

Michael "Mosca" Torres was charged in the 2019 indictment with Conspiracy to Distribute Heroin, it was noted he was part of the 'AB/Mexican Mafia Alliance'. Yandell and Travis Burhop, who was incarcerated in Calpatria State Prison, had been intercepted on smuggled-in cell phones saying that the heroin from "Mosca for 600" was "the shit". Meaning that Torres had coordinated the sale of an ounce of heroin to the organization for $600.

Further conversations revealed that Orange County PEN1 (Public Enemy Number One) gang member, and at that time, a potential AB member, Matt "Cyco" Hall managed street distribution and sent money back up to the AB members. Money had been paid either by PO Box, money order, or Paypal. Hall became a fugitive following the indictment and hanged himself in his prison cell after being arrested in Costa Rica.

Yandell had been looking to further purchase heroin from Mosca and keep buying larger quantities. The taps disclosed that Yandell sought to buy larger quantities at heavier discounts and had told Jeanna they would eventually become "The Cartel."

Yandell directed Jeanna that they could get the $100 per ounce discount if her customer (the undercover DEA Agent) would purchase over 9 ounces of "black" heroin twice a month.

In August 2016, Sylvester was caught with contraband and shortly after, Yandell called Burhop to have money orders sent and held for Sylvester as a result. He also called a man, believed to be "Mosca" telling him about it and that they should talk in person at Folsom prison days later about the issues to avoid using their cellphones. Yandell spoke with Mosca, looking to coordinate the purchase of the kilo for $24,000. Mosca said the price would be $25,000, but was reminded by Yandell that Sylvester had mentioned the price was told to him by Mosca to be between $22,000 and $24,000.

Yandell told Jeanna the fact that Mosca had "an unlimited supply" of heroin and they looked to purchase kilograms at a further discount for $20,000, especially as the quality of previous heroin from Torres had been low. Torres himself questioned the high-quality claim from his supplier and that he would look to get high-quality heroin provided at a lower cost to make up for it and provide three ounces free.

Authorities seized heroin connected to Mosca from a Burhop-linked stash house in Fontana, California.

Agreement to End Hostilities

In 2012, prisoners in Pelican Bay State Prison’s Security Housing Unit (SHU) announced a push to end all hostilities between racial groups within California’s prisons and jails. The handwritten announcement was sent to prison advocacy organizations. It is signed by several prisoners, identifying themselves as the PBSP-SHU Short Corridor Collective.

Authors of the "Agreement to End Hostilities" 

To whom it may concern and all California Prisoners:

Greetings from the entire PBSP-SHU Short Corridor Hunger Strike Representatives. We are hereby presenting this mutual agreement on behalf of all racial groups here in the PBSP-SHU Corridor. Wherein, we have arrived at a mutual agreement concerning the following points:

1. If we really want to bring about substantive meaningful changes to the CDCR system in a manner beneficial to all solid individuals who have never been broken by CDCR’s torture tactics intended to coerce one to become a state informant via debriefing, that now is the time for us to collectively seize this moment in time and put an end to more than 20-30 years of hostilities between our racial groups.

2. Therefore, beginning on Oct. 10, 2012, all hostilities between our racial groups in SHU, ad-seg, general population, and county jails will officially cease. This means that from this date on, all racial group hostilities need to be at an end. And if personal issues arise between individuals, people need to do all they can to exhaust all diplomatic means to settle such disputes; do not allow personal, individual issues to escalate into racial group issues!

3. We also want to warn those in the general population that IGI [Institutional Gang Investigators] will continue to plant undercover Sensitive Needs Yard (SNY) debriefer “inmates” amongst the solid GP prisoners with orders from IGI to be informers, snitches, rats and obstructionists, in order to attempt to disrupt and undermine our collective groups’ mutual understanding on issues intended for our mutual causes....

Ronald Yandell

"I knew my life was in danger due to my participation as a hunger strike representative and co-author of the “Agreement to End Hostilities” manifesto between all races. When I was released from Pelican Bay Security Housing Units (SHU) in 2015, IGI said I would “one day pay for it.” Ronald Yandell claimed in early 2019 that he was the victim of an attempted kidnapping and possible murder by vengeful IGI officers. He claimed he was told he would be transferred back to Pelican Bay SHU, even though he was 

Those of us released within the last five years from the SHU Short Corridor back into General Population (GP) due to the hunger strike have mostly held the agreement across California, bringing prison racial violence to a historic low.

The prison industry receives more money with the more violence they have to manage. This explains the resurgence in IGI-forced gladiator fighting between races recently. They are desperately trying to keep us fighting.

The prison system has set up the racial divide amongst us for decades in order to have us killing each other for their profit, scamming the taxpayers out of money. This is why they force inmates to gladiator fight. Think about it: We actually have to fight and outsmart the CDC in order to have racial peace and less violence. This is the same thing those that govern the free people out there have been doing for decades.

We have been played, all of us, from the prison to the streets. Our power is in coming together. We can take back what belongs to us, our sovereignty, and the treasures that belong to everyone. They got people out there working two or three jobs to stay above water, keeping them too exhausted to fight the world that is being forced upon them. This is not the life we were born to live."

-Ronald Yandell


  1. Most of them are Herion Addicts and have been for years!! Same with Mexican mafia!! syringe💉💉💉💉

    1. Same with NF and BGF too... they all got old tecatos with bad hearts and livers rotting away

    2. If they weren't in prison they would be living in a trailer park. Pure white trash.

    3. Out with the old, in with the new. 9:01

    4. @Detroit right on buddy! Hah, can't be hanging round the trailer park now...

      yeeeehaaaew, i can't wait to smoke smoke some blues & ice...... mmmmmmm yummmmy............. come here sister, the boys wanna have a good time again, an I'm going first!!!

  2. Always amazes me how much can get done from a prison cell and a cellphone lol


    2. Chapitos glambow is married to an Irish famili wonder if there is a connection also related to gastelum/quinteros/zambada-garcia

  3. Those trials are a joke and wasting tax money. They should charge the guards and the warden for the smuggled in phones.
    They already do life so whats the point in another life sentence?

    1. 100% ... It def seems like a personal thing against the CA faction if not Yandell and Troxell specifically.. They were both big in the hunger strike, with Troxell being successful in suing the CDCR too back then. They did stir shit up too for the AB in general, but still.. why did the taxpayers have to spend millions so the feds could do their dirty work?

  4. Felons Talk on Youtube just did some good pieces on the trial and the verdict.. I guess they might already be cleaning house too, if the Ashker rumor is true...

    They also talk about how there's actually been another huge indictment going on this whole time as well. The big "Fresnecks" bust from 2020 (that was covered here on BB too) became a massive indictment, which should be going to court now any day now.. This indictment involves multi-state trafficking, a dozen murders, and even Sinaloa connections back in Cali.. also two double homicides on the streets, one set of victims were Russian bodyguards for an Israeli mobster.

    WAAAAY more significant than this clownshow that just finished lol

    1. What is the rumor of Ashker?? Where is that fresnecks article??

    2. Ashker got moved on... He's currently at CMC they talk about it in the latest vid at the end...

  5. Drug addicted lifers who suck at crime and live a life of lock down, pretend murderous beefs, and backstabbing. The shit they do to each other is no different than what the piece of shit snitches do. Every street org, gang, cartel, etc… rats. These fuckheads are living a supposed code nobody else lives by. There is a reason for prisons and segs.. these fuckers are clear examples why. Fuck them fuck their pathetic way of life, fuck their truce.. the guards run their lives. Fucking crybaby hard guys. I’d have them killing each other also. Do society a favor!

  6. AB gets the Nazi Lowriders, Aryan wannabees, to do their dirtywork

    1. the NLR no longer exist, they made a move to take power a decade or so ago and were fully rolled up by the AB and fissolved permanently. Yandell in the article hilariously posts vids online from the shu you can see them on bitchute and youtube.

  7. Bunch of fukn Heroin Addicts... FuK their Prison Politics... On these Streets ANYTHING GOES!!!

    1. 11:34 not in Cali streets lol

    2. @320 — are you kidding? Born and raised in Cali, familiar with north to south… it’s crazier than it’s ever been.

  8. There’s nothing new about this Mexican mafia has always had alliance with aryan brothers

    1. I don't think anybody Saud it was new.

    2. I don't understand why anybody would want to be involved in the narco hustle. That shit is wack yo, pure gutter. What happened to the days of honorable indigenous mafias that just wanted to sell some of their plants and agricultural products to Americans?

    3. @109 — what the hell is an indigenous mafia??

  9. I am curtis from arizona. I used to sell meth to AB until i got popped and put in fed lockup for 15 years in north dakota. Sons a silence were good customers too. Oh right on. Curtis Olson.

    1. “donec mors non separat”

    2. You are BEING MONITORED. Not by the DEA or the FBI, but by THEM ALIENS. You have been PLANTED.

  10. All this dudes are all grandpas and still behaving like 15 year old teenagers

  11. They’re all in their 60’s and 50’s and most will never get out they lived their whole life behind bar what a bunch of losers

  12. I don’t use opiates or meth, but I would definitely do the taxpayers a favor and do as much heroin as possible if I was in prison for life like these guys. I’d say fuck it and try to overdose every single time I shot up, rather than rot in a prison cell for the rest of my life, listening to people talk shit about nothing all day long and live by their prison rules. I did time a few times when I was younger, but I can’t put up with all that shit at the age I am now.

  13. Hells angels suk

  14. Yea prison sucks except for the sex

    1. So why aren't you in prison partaking right now?

  15. P Diddy gonna be tapping these white pansies @sses if he goes to the same prison.

  16. They are all scum, but the last three paragraphs have some undeniable facts!
    No wonder Michael Jordan himself has invested heavily into prisons!
    Poverty - bad education - low pay - crime - prison - profit.


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