By Paul Kurtz
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Federal Racketeering trial of seven residents of Bartram Village in Southwest Philadelphia is coming to an end after ten weeks of testimony.
In his closing arguments Assistant U.S. Attorney Sal Alstofi told the jury that accused gang leader Ramel Moten and six co-defendants carried out a decade long reign of terror through drug sales, violence and intimidation.
“For 10 years they held captive the entire neighborhood of Bartram Village Housing Development. Through their crimes they left a trail of victims in their wake,” said Alstofi.
Many of those alleged victims took the witness stand along with others who had been indicted then flipped for the prosecution. Moten’s Attorney, Chris Furlong questioned their credibility.
“Ladies and gentlemen, I know that just because a witness takes the stand and puts his or her hand on the bible or affirms doesn’t mean that a cloak comes down from the ceiling and every word out of their mouth is the honest to God’s truth,” said Furlong.
The jury could begin deliberations next week.