Raymond “Shrimp Boy” Chow was convicted by jurors on Friday morning of all 162 counts he faced during his two-month trial, including murder in the service of racketeering, murder conspiracy and racketeering.
The Chinatown gangster had argued in court that he turned his life around, but jurors returned the guilty verdicts within three days of closing arguments. His attorney Tony Serra said later that Chow will appeal the verdict.
Chow smiled when he entered the courtroom and remained calm as the verdict was read. His girlfriend, Alicia Lo, cried in response to the verdict.
“There was so much misconduct that this is the… result we expected,” Chow’s attorney Curtis Briggs told reporters after the verdict came through.
The brother and sister of Allen Leung, who Chow ordered the death of in 2006, were in attendance as Chow entered the federal courtroom and hugged Serra before the verdict was read.
“He was noble in his… defeat,” Serra later said. “We will prevail in the end.”
Chow, 56, was also found guilty of money laundering and conspiracy to traffic stolen cigarettes and liquor.
Chow was arrested in March 2014 when law enforcement raids across the Bay Area detained more than 20 people, including former state Sen. Leland Yee, former school board member Keith Jackson and Chow.
The mass arrest stemmed from a federal indictment alleging, among other things, that Chow headed an organized gang outfit in Chinatown and that Yee and Jackson committed a series of crimes to furthered Yee’s political ambitions. Yee and Jackson have since pleaded guilty to racketeering and other charges.
Prosecution argued that after being released from federal prison in 2003, Chow began to rebuild a criminal organization. He had been released after testifying against a former triad colleague Peter Chong, and then began his attempt to take over two tongs in Chinatown, both led by Allen Leung.
When Leung declined to lend Chow roughly $100,000, Chow ordered one of his underlings to shoot up the front door of the Hop Sing Tong. Leung subsequently went to the FBI, telling them he feared for his life.
In 2006, Chow ordered his lieutenants to murder Leung inside of his Jackson Street store, where he was killed in front of his wife. After Leung’s death, Chow was made the dragon head of the Ghee Kung Tong, and appeared at Leung’s funeral wearing all white.
Prosecutors also argued that Chow conspired to have another rival killed, but contend that Chow was not responsible for that man’s 2013 death. Instead, they say the conspiracy itself was a crime.
Undercover agents participated in a yearslong investigation and infiltration of the Tong, and were key witnesses in the case alongside five former Chow colleagues who testified against him.
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