U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. announced that Robert W. Moran, Jr., 63, of Rochester, NY, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering activity, before U.S. District Judge Charles J. Siragusa. The charge carries a maximum penalty of three years in prison and a $250,000 fine. In addition, Gina Tata, 52, also of Rochester, pleaded guilty to being an accessory after the fact to the crime of conspiracy to commit assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering activity. That charge carries a maximum penalty of 18 months in prison and a $125,000 fine.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Brett A. Harvey, who is handling the case, stated that on May 31, 2006, Moran – a member and officer of the Rochester Hell’s Angels – assaulted a patron at Spenders Bar on Lyell Avenue in Rochester with a baseball bat. The defendant beat the patron in the head and body after the patron made disparaging remarks about motorcycle clubs, including the Hell’s Angels. At the time of the assault, Moran was a member of the Rochester Hell’s Angels, which was an enterprise the members of which were engaged in racketeering activity, including drug trafficking and conspiracy to commit murder. The defendant committed the assault in order to maintain his position in the Rochester Hell’s Angels.
Gina Tata, who was the bartender at Spenders Bar at the time of the assault, tried to help Moran escape arrest and prosecution for the assault. After hearing the comments made by the patron, Tata called a member of the Rochester Hell’s Angels, leading to the eventual beating of the victim by Moran. In the aftermath of the attack, Tata took several steps to help Moran avoid apprehension by law enforcement authorities, including lying to the police about the identities of the perpetrator of the assault. Tata also counseled another eyewitness to not give the police a good description of the perpetrator and to not identify Moran. Also, in the early morning hours after the assault, Tata let an associate of the Rochester Hell’s Angels into Spenders Bar to retrieve a hard drive containing recordings of the interior surveillance cameras at the bar. In May 2007, a year after the assault, Tata lied to the FBI about the perpetrators of the assault, describing them as tall, young Hispanic males, and falsely told the FBI that she used the phone at Spenders Bar only to call 911 and the owner of the bar.
These pleas are part of a larger investigation that resulted in the indictment and arrest of members and associates of the Rochester and Monterey (California) Hell's Angels for drug trafficking and racketeering-related offenses in February 2012. Hell's Angels President Richard W. Mar, and Jeffrey A. Tyler, were charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute, 500 grams or more of methamphetamine. Five other defendants – Henry McCauley, Donna Boon, Paul Griffin, Richard E. Riedman, and Gordon L. Montgomery – were convicted for their roles in the methamphetamine conspiracy. Judge Siragusa sentenced Griffin to probation and Riedman to 37 months in prison. McCauley, Boon and Montomgery are awaiting sentencing. Another defendant, Timothy M. Stone, was convicted and of being an accessory after the fact to the assault and conspiracy, and was sentenced to 12 months in prison.
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