9 plead guilty in theft ring related to New Orleans gang

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NEW ORLEANS (AP) – Nine people involved in the New Orleans-based East Side Wheelie Kings bike gang have pleaded guilty in a scheme that stole more than $200,000 in motorcycles and 4-wheelers in Mississippi, Alabama, and Louisiana.

The Sun Herald of Biloxi reports the vehicles were stolen from businesses, loaded on to stolen U-Hauls and taken back to New Orleans, where they were sold online. Seven defendants pleaded guilty to a federal charge of conspiracy in the plot, while two pleaded guilty to transportation of stolen vehicles across state lines. Each also faces states charges of burglary or receiving stolen property.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Kathlyn Van Buskirk says the scheme started in February 2017 and lasted more than a year. The nine defendants now await sentencing on the federal charges.

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