(KETK) — A Bullard man who federal prosecutors say is a member of the white supremist Aryan Circle gang pleaded guilty Tuesday to being among those who attacked a man in 2016 and other crimes.
Anthony Levi Cochran, 39, admitted in court that as a member of the gang he beat someone, was involved in a conspiracy to sell firearms to a convicted felon and participated in racketeering.
He faces up to 20 years in federal prison and will be sentenced later.
Cochran’s helped plan and carry out an attack another Aryan Circle member who wanted to switch his gang affiliation, records show.
Federal prosecutors say AC members met in a Tyler home to plan the attack and then carried it out on Oct. 2, 2016, at a Tyler park. The gang members beat and kicked the victim who required medical care for his injuries.
Federal prosecutors describe the Aryan Circle as a violent gang that started in Texas prisons and enforces its rules through murder, attempted murder, assault and threats.
In related cases, Breanna Beckley, 40, of Moberly, Missouri, and Shane Louque, 46, of Gonzales, Louisiana, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance.
Beckley transported between 1.5 and 5 kilograms of methamphetamine in 2016, from Houston, Texas, to buyers in Louisiana, such as Louque and other AC members.
The drug crimes was uncovered as part of Operation Noble Virtue, an investigation into AC leadership involving many law agencies.
“In the battle against organized, multistate criminal organizations, agency cooperation is essential,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Nicholas J. Ganjei. “Criminals carry on their illegal and violent conduct in whatever jurisdiction benefits them the most, so we need to bring the fight to them, wherever they might be.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Rapp of the Eastern District of Texas is prosecuting these cases along with trial attorneys from the Organized Crime and Gang Section of the Department of Justice.