Jamaica prison gang member among three cuffed on federal charges for alleged 2017 attack on fellow inmate

Man in handcuffs
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A Jamaica man is among three men facing federal charges for allegedly attacking a fellow inmate at a New York City jail over two years ago, prosecutors announced Tuesday.

Kalvin Thwaites, 26, was arrested alongside Andrew Burrell, 28, of the Bronx and Kendall Newland, 25, of Mount Vernon, New York, on charges of assault and attempted murder in aid of racketeering activity. If convicted, the defendants face a maximum of 20 years in prison.

“As alleged in the indictment, the defendants tried to kill a fellow inmate in order to promote their membership in the MacBallas street gang,” said Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman. “We are committed to working with our law enforcement partners to end gang violence, wherever it occurs.”

According to court documents, the defendants are alleged members of the MacBallas street gang, who operate primarily in and around the New York City area, including within city, state, and federal jails and prisons. Members and associates of the MacBallas gang are said to engage in narcotics trafficking, as well as acts of violence, to preserve and protect the power of the gang, among other things.

Charges say that on June 7, 2017, while detained at the Vernon C. Bain Center — a New York City jail in the Bronx — the defendants allegedly assaulted and tried to murder a fellow inmate in an effort to maintain their positions in the gang.

“These MacBallas gang members were already serving time for their criminal acts when they tried to take the life of another inmate,” said HSI Special Agent-in Charge Peter C. Fitzhugh. “When it comes to maintaining power and position, these individuals have little regard for human life.  This is why law enforcement remains diligent in its gang enforcement both on and off the streets.”

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