David Harlow, a member of the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas (ABT), was found guilty today by Senior U.S. District Judge Ewing Werlein Jr. of racketeering aggravated assault and conspiracy to commit racketeering aggravated assault. The conviction came as a result of Harlow’s role in the 2008 beating of a gang prospect.
ABT is a powerful race-based, state-wide organization that operates inside and outside of state and federal prisons and elsewhere in the United States. It was established in the early 1980s within the Texas prison system and adopted many of the teachings and writings of the Aryan Brotherhood, a California-based prison gang that was formed in the California prison system during the 1960s. According to court filings, the ABT was primarily concerned with the protection of white inmates and white supremacy and separatism. Over time, however, the ABT expanded its criminal enterprise to include illegal activities for profit.
Members, and oftentimes associates, are required to follow the orders of higher-ranking members, often referred to as “direct orders.” Those orders often included discipline and enforcement through murder, attempted murder, conspiracy to murder, assault, robbery and threats against those who violate the rules or pose a threat to the enterprise.
Harlow faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. Sentencing for Harlow is scheduled for June 15, 2012, before Judge Werlein.