Sixty-four people members of white supremacist gangs have been sentenced to a combined 820 years in federal prison, the U.S. attorney’s office for the Northern District of Texas announced this week.
According to the release, the investigation began in 2014 and included 153 total defendants tied to white supremacist gangs, said Erin Dooley, spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney’s office.
By 2017, 89 of those defendants had been convicted and sentenced to a combined 1,070 years in federal prison.
The remaining 64 individuals were charged in 2018 while the last defendant in the second round, 51-year-old Garry Cody Jones, was sentenced Thursday to more than 11 years in federal prison on a drug charge, according to the Spokesman.
“Not only do white supremacist gangs endorse repugnant ideologies, they also facilitate a violent drug and gun trade, putting our citizens in grave danger,” U.S. Attorney Erin Nealy Cox said in a release. “We were alarmed – but not necessarily surprised – at the quantities of drugs and firearms recovered during this investigation. The U.S. Attorney’s Office is committed to working with our law enforcement partners to dismantle these organizations, disrupt their criminal activities, and put their members behind bars.”
The majority of the defendants had prior violent criminal histories, including a combined 587 convictions, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.
The arrests are a win for those rallying for racial and social justice, as the current administration is reluctant to call out extreme white supremacy groups. While Black Lives Matter remains a dirty word for the Trump administration, the KKK continues to operate mostly unchecked.