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DOJ Charges 21 Alleged Members of ‘Simon City Royals’ with Numerous Crimes


An early 1970’s Simon City Royals business card. | Image by RIK89GTA on Flickr

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The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) charged twenty-one alleged members of the Simon City Royals gang on March 4 with a variety of offenses related to a racketeering conspiracy that involved murder, attempted murder, narcotics trafficking, witness tampering, wire fraud, and money laundering.

The indictment charges twenty men and one woman ranging in age from 29 to 53.

All twenty-one of the individuals indicted are accused of narcotics and money laundering conspiracy. Eighteen are also accused of racketeering conspiracy, and nine of those eighteen are additionally accused of assault, attempted murder, and murder in aid of racketeering.

According to Unitedgangs.com, the Simon City Royals are one of Chicago’s few primarily Caucasian-European gangs. Born in the 1950s as a group of greasers, a typical white youth subculture, they got their name from Simons Park, their original stronghold and base of operation. Though the Simon City Royals originated in Chicago, they have since relocated to Mississippi and Wisconsin.

Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr. stated that the DOJ’s Criminal Division is committed to dismantling gangs such as the Simon City Royals that use violence and intimidation to cause harm to communities and obstruct the justice system. The indictment demonstrates the Department of Justice’s commitment to protecting victims of these gangs and prosecuting alleged offenders.

Special Agent in Charge Kurt Thielhorn of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) New Orleans Field Division stated, “This case is an example of ATF’s dedication and commitment to combating violent crime in our communities. ATF is proud to work with our law enforcement partners to bring violent criminals to justice and to help make our neighborhoods safer.”

According to the indictment, the Simon City Royals allegedly deal in extortion, narcotics, and identity theft, among other things. The gang has a formalized hierarchy with many “boards” and “teams,” including a team that carries out violent gang punishments and a “money team” that secures cash through fraud, illegal gambling, and identity theft.

The DOJ says the defendants allegedly killed or tried to kill many people, including a suspected law-enforcement cooperator and people who they considered to have disrespected the gang.

To disguise their illegal activity and the amount of money they had acquired, the defendants allegedly used a variety of methods, including sending encrypted messages and filing documents with the state of Mississippi to set up a fake nonprofit organization, per the press release from the DOJ.

The defendants face sentences of up to 10 years in prison for attempted murder in aid of racketeering, 10 years to life in prison for narcotics conspiracy, up to 20 years in prison for both money laundering conspiracy and assault in aid of racketeering, and 20 years to life in prison for racketeering conspiracy.

If convicted, they face a mandatory life sentence for murder in aid of racketeering.

A federal judge will decide on a penalty after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors, should the alleged suspects be convicted of any crimes.

Judge Roy Percy, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Mississippi, set a court date of March 7 for the defendants’ first court appearances. They were arrested on March 3.

According to the Department of Justice, an indictment is merely an allegation, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

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