Convicted gang leader sentenced to 35 years in federal prison

DETROIT (AP) - A federal judge has sentenced a gang leader to 35 years in prison, far short of the life sentence sought by prosecutors.

Ahead of a court hearing, the U.S. Attorney's Office warned that Antonio Johnson's "charisma and persona" could put him at the top of a criminal organization even if he's released after three decades.

The 39-year-old Johnson is described as the undisputed leader of the Phantom Outlaw motorcycle club and the Detroit Vice Lords. He was convicted of racketeering conspiracy, conspiracy to commit murder and other crimes.

Judge Paul Borman sentenced him Tuesday.

Defense attorney Michael Rataj said Johnson isn't an "animal" and a life sentence would be "outrageous." He said the facts didn't support the verdict.

Published: Thu, Sep 10, 2015