Gang member gets 9 years

CRIME WATCH

July 15, 2008

A 21-year-old Woodlawn man was sentenced yesterday to nine years in federal prison after he pleaded guilty to playing a role in a racketeering conspiracy involving the Bloods gang, the Maryland U.S. attorney's office said.

Orlando Gilyard was a member of the Tree Top Piro, a sect of the Bloods active in Baltimore, according to prosecutors. The name is derived from a group of streets in Los Angeles' Compton neighborhood named after trees, the prosecutors said.

Gilyard pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Baltimore to be being a part of the gang, helping to organize the sale of cocaine and traveling to California to meet top members of the Bloods.

Twenty-five suspected members of the Baltimore Bloods group have been indicted on federal charges; Gilyard and one other person have pleaded guilty.

Twenty-three others have their cases pending.

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