Brooklyn gang member sentenced to 32 years for racketeering conspiracy
In Brooklyn Federal Court on Monday, Michael Liburd, a member of the Coney Island-based street gang known as the West End Enterprise, was sentenced by United States District Court Judge Edward R. Korman to 32 years’ imprisonment following his conviction for racketeering conspiracy, including his participation in the 2016 murder of Antwon Flowers and the extortion of public works employees in Coney Island.
The defendant pleaded guilty to the charges on Nov. 18, 2021.
Liburd was a member of the West End Enterprise, a street gang composed of individuals residing in and around the Sea Rise Apartments, the Gravesend Houses and Surfside Gardens, also known as the Mermaid Houses, located in Coney Island.
Liburd and his co-conspirators committed multiple crimes, including the extortion of public works employees at a Brooklyn construction site, violent robberies, witness intimidation and retaliatory shootings against members of a rival gang known as “Sex Money Murder,” and the Jan. 17, 2016 murder of Antwon Flowers.
Liburd murdered Flowers in retaliation for the victim’s purported role in the killing of a West End Enterprise leader the previous day. As captured on surveillance video, Liburd and his co-conspirators followed Flowers as he left the Mermaid Houses, at which point, the defendant pulled out a gun and shot Flowers in the back of the head, killing him instantly.
Liburd’s co-defendant Maurice Washington was previously sentenced to 25 years’ imprisonment for his role in the racketeering conspiracy and murder.
Breon Peace, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, Michael J. Driscoll, Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI), Keith Kruskall, Acting Special Agent-in-Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration, New York Division (DEA), and Dermot F. Shea, Commissioner, New York City Police Department, announced the sentence.
“Today’s sentence not only holds the defendant accountable for his numerous acts of violence, but also sends a powerful message that this Office and its law enforcement partners are committed to aggressively prosecuting members of violent street gangs. We will do all we can to make our communities safe,” said United States Attorney Peace.
“This case is yet another example of the deadly relationship between drugs and violence,” stated DEA Acting Special Agent-in-Charge Kruskall. “The sentence imposed sends a message to other criminal organizations that law enforcement will not tolerate these brazen acts of violence in our communities.”
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. As part of the program, U.S. Attorneys’ Offices work in partnership with federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement and their local communities to develop effective, locally based strategies to reduce violent crime.
The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Organized Crime and Gangs Section. Assistant United States Attorneys Jennifer M. Sasso, Kayla C. Bensing and Lindsey R. Oken are in charge of the prosecution.
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