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Aryan Brotherhood member sentenced to life

After being found guilty by a jury seven months ago, a member of the Aryan Brotherhood of Mississippi gang was sentenced to life in prison for a variety of violent crimes that include murder, attempted murder, kidnapping and drug charges.

Franks George Owens Jr. of D’Iberville pleaded not guilty to drug trafficking and murder charges after being inducted in April 2015 after a two-year investigation. Owens was charged with conspiracy to participate in racketeering, kidnapping and the 2010 murder of fellow Aryan Brotherhood member Michael James Hudson and attempted murder of Jeremy Bailey.

Owns was sentenced to life in prison for Hudson’s murder and additional 10 years for the attempted murder on Tuesday at the Federal Courthouse in Oxford.

A total of 17 people were indicted; however, all but Owens and Eric Glenn Parker pleaded guilty and many were witnesses for the government’s case against Owens and Parker. Parker has not yet been sentenced. He’s charged with conspiracy, possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute and the murder of Hudson.

During the trial, witnesses say Hudson denied a director order from Owens and failed to pay Parker for drugs. Hudson was suppose to be beat and taught a lesson. However, witnesses said “things got out of control,” and Hudson was killed. Owens and Parker then allegedly put his body in a 5-galleon drum and with the help of one of the other defendants, burned the body for five days before dumping the barrel into the river. His body was never recovered.

Owens earned his “lightning bolts” and the status of ABM executioner for his alleged role in the homicide, according to court documents.

The attempted murder charge stems from an incident when Owens ordered the stabbing of a gang member in prison for threatening to rape a child. The gang member was stabbed five times.

The drug charges show that drugs and funds were allegedly smuggled by the defendants from California to Mississippi, and contraband was smuggled into the prison system, court records show.

“Our neighborhoods deserve to exist without fear and intimidation inflicted by violent drug gangs like the Aryan Brotherhood of Mississippi,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Azzam. “The sentencing of this gang member should be a warning to others who prey on the weak and defenseless through their drug trafficking and violent acts. We will continue to work with all of our law enforcement partners, to relentlessly pursue these violent criminals and drug traffickers plaguing our communities.”

The ABM was modeled after the Aryan Brotherhood, which was formed in the California prison system in the 1960s, and pursued unity with them in 2013.