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Alleged gang leader spared death penalty gets 45 years

June 12, 2018

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — An alleged New Jersey gang leader earlier spared a possible federal death penalty has been sentenced to 45 years after acknowledging involvement in what prosecutors called a “reign of terror” that included five murders.

U.S. District Judge Esther Salas imposed the sentence Tuesday on 33-year-old Farad Roland, who pleaded guilty to seven of the 27 charges against him.

Authorities accused Roland of involvement in killings, carjackings and kidnappings allegedly committed by a Bloods-affiliated drug-trafficking gang in Newark’s South Ward that investigators said controlled the drug trade for much of the 2000s.

The judge in January barred prosecutors from seeking capital punishment, citing an intellectual disability of the defendant. Although New Jersey abolished the death penalty at the state level in 2007, capital punishment is still possible under federal criminal law.

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