RICO

During the past 24 hours the Fort Myers Police Department and the State Attorney’s Office have led the latest part of a massive operation to attempt to eradicate violent crime in Southwest Florida. This two year operation culminated today in the arrest of 21 members of the “Lake Boyz” gang on Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) charges.

Those arrested have been charged by the State Attorney’s Office with one RICO count for their conspiracy to agree to commit crimes. Additionally, all have been charged with a second RICO count for their participation in crimes. Twelve (12) additional counts have been filed against a number of the “Lake Boyz” gang members charged with RICO. The State Attorney’s Office alleges that the “Lake Boyz” operates as a criminal gang and legally qualifies as an “enterprise” pursuant to Florida RICO statutes.

These mass arrests are the result of the creation of a Racketeering Gang Task Force within the State Attorney’s Office under the guidance of State Attorney Steve Russell and managed by Chief Assistant Amira Fox, to work with area law enforcement agencies in an effort to address serious crime issues and bring to justice those responsible.

Officers and detectives of the Fort Myers Police Department and prosecutors within the State Attorney’s Office have cooperated and worked diligently together on this task force over countless hours of coordination and consultation. Fort Myers Chief of Police Derrick Diggs has provided his unrelenting support to these efforts upon taking over leadership of the department. The arrests today, with the invaluable assistance of the U.S. Marshals Service, Lee County Sheriff’s Office and the Federal Bureau of investigation (FBI), speak to those efforts.

Importantly, today’s arrests do not serve as an end to this investigation. The task force will continue to target members of the organizations and groups responsible for committing significant crimes in our area.

Samantha Syoen
Communications Director
State Attorney’s Office
239-533-1125
ssyoen@sao.cjis20.org