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Vanilla Gorilla: Affiliates of notorious white supremacist Ghost Face Gangsters plead guilty to drug charges

By Gangsters Inc. Editors

Sixteen alleged affiliates of a notorious white supremacist street gang have pled guilty in federal court, including the group’s leader, it was reported yesterday. They had been indicted on drug trafficking and firearms charges as part of Operation Vanilla Gorilla, which targeted the notorious Ghost Face Gangsters.

The Ghost Face Gangsters is a violent criminal street gang largely operated from inside Georgia’s prison system. The multi-agency federal, state and local operation netted 46 indictments on federal charges, primarily for drug trafficking and illegal firearms possession.

The indictments were handed down in November and December 2018 in U.S. District Court in Savannah. The proceedings of three additional defendants have been sealed by the court because of safety concerns.

The indictments allege that the drug trafficking conspiracy began as early as 2015, operating in Bryan, Chatham, Effingham, Emmanuel, Evans and Tattnall Counties, in the Southern District of Georgia, and elsewhere. Individuals associated with the Ghost Face Gangsters and with other criminal street gangs and helped deal drugs for these groups. In return, they received protection.

Operation Vanilla Gorilla represents one of the largest takedowns of Ghost Face Gangsters associates to date and follows the March 2018 arrests of 23 gang members in the Northern District of Georgia on federal charges, and multiple arrests in October 2018 on state charges in Spalding County.

Those who have entered guilty pleas in the case are:

  • 47-year-old David McCloskey: The lead defendant in the case, pled guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine; conspiracy to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine; and to drug user in possession of a firearm. He faces not less than 10 years to life in federal prison.
  • 32-year-old Daniel Fleming: Pled guilty to felon in possession of firearm. He faces up to 10 years in prison. However, if he is deemed by the court to be an armed career criminal, he could be sentenced to a minimum of 15 years up to life.
  • 43-year-old Christine Loggins: Pled guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, and conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. She faces up to 20 years.
  • 32-year-old Devon Aines: Pled guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, and conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. He faces up to 20 years.
  • 32-year-old Miranda Burnsed: Pled guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, and conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.  She faces up to 20 years.
  • 43-year-old Avery Wiggins: Pled guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a quantity of methamphetamine. She faces up to 20 years.
  • 45-year-old Maurice L. Graham: Pled guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a quantity of methamphetamine, possession of ammunition by a convicted felon, and possession and concealment of counterfeit obligations. He faces up to 20 years in prison. However, if he is deemed by the court to be an armed career criminal, he could be sentenced to a minimum of 15 years up to life.
  • 40-year-old Jessie Hurt: Pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute a quantity of methamphetamine and felon in possession of a firearm. He faces at least 5 years up to life.
  • 47-year-old Raymond Warren: Pled guilty to felon in possession of a firearm. He was sentenced to 24 months of imprisonment.
  • 35-year-old Ryan Smiley: Pled guilty to felon in possession of a firearm. He was sentenced to 27 months.
  • 26-year-old Darren Driggers: Pled guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a quantity of methamphetamine, and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. He faces up to 20 years in prison. However, if he is deemed by the court to be an armed career criminal, he could be sentenced to a minimum of 15 years up to life.
  • 37-year-old Elizabeth Kitchens: Pled guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a quantity of methamphetamine, and felon in possession of a firearm. She faces up to 20 years in prison. However, if she is deemed by the court to be an armed career criminal, she could be sentenced to a minimum of 15 years up to life.
  • 36-year-old Crystal Wilson: Pled guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a quantity of methamphetamine. She faces up to 20 years.

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