CAMDEN, NEW JERSEY — An Atlantic City, New Jersey, man was sentenced to 151 months in prison for engaging in a conspiracy to distribute heroin with a criminal street gang — the “Dirty Block” — which used threats, intimidation and violence to maintain control of the city’s illegal drug trade, U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman announced.
Shaamel Spencer, a/k/a “Buck,” 30, previously pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Joseph E. Irenas to one count of conspiracy to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin, and one count of being a previously convicted felon in possession of a firearm. Judge Irenas imposed the sentenced in Camden federal court.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
Spencer acted as an “enforcer” on behalf of Mykal Derry, 33, of Atlantic City, helping Dirty Block control the heroin trafficking trade in and around the public housing apartment complexes of Stanley Holmes, Carver Hall, Schoolhouse, Adams Court and Cedar Court. Spencer assisted in the distribution of heroin to Dirty Block customers.
Spencer was arrested on Oct. 30, 2012, and found to be in possession of a firearm. On Feb. 12, 2013, Spencer was charged with being a previously convicted felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition. A search warrant executed at Spencer’s residence at the time of his arrest revealed approximately $4,500 in suspected drug proceeds, as well as a 9mm semiautomatic handgun and 44 rounds of ammunition.
Spencer and other members of the Dirty Block gang — a number of them previously convicted felons — had traveled to a shooting range in Lakewood, New Jersey, where they were photographed firing handguns.
At his plea hearing, Spencer admitted to distributing heroin. He also admitted to being a previously convicted felon who possessed firearms and ammunition, and that specifically, he took a handgun to an Atlantic City casino, where he believed Derry was involved in a violent fight with his rivals. Spencer also agreed to forfeit the proceeds of his drug trafficking as well as his firearms and ammunition.
In addition to the prison term, Judge Irenas sentenced Spencer to eight years of supervised release.