WASHINGTON, D.C. (Jan. 29) -- Ronnie "Skinny Suge" Thomas, a Maryland gang leader who produced and starred in the infamous "Stop Snitching" videos, was convicted Thursday in Baltimore federal court of being part of an organization involved in drug trafficking, conspiracy to commit murder and robbery.
Authorities alleged that Thomas and another gang member Sherman Pride, who was also convicted Thursday, were part of the Tree Top Piru Bloods (TTP Bloods). Twenty-five other people have been charged in the case.
"Many dangerous criminals have been convicted and removed from Maryland as a result of superb work by police and prosecutors on the TTP Bloods investigation," U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein said in a statement. "Racketeering cases often are time-consuming, but they make a dramatic contribution to public safety."
The "Stop Snitching" videos advocated violence against those who cooperated with police and became quite popular. Carmelo Anthony, an NBA star and Baltimore native, faced intense criticism for appearing in one of them.
Authorities say the TTP Bloods is an offshoot of the Bloods gang, which was formed in Los Angeles in the early 1970s.
The U.S. attorney's office said the Maryland TTPs began in the Washington County Detention Center in Hagerstown, Md., around 1999.
"The gang was formed for mutual protection in response to the aggression of other inmates from Baltimore and spread throughout Maryland, mostly by recruiting from inside Maryland prisons," the U.S. attorney's office said.