LOS ANGELES – Three members of the Black Dragons, a
loosely knit Asian street gang, were convicted by a jury today of
murdering a man who was stabbed to death in a Little Tokyo
restaurant 2-1/2 years ago, the District Attorney’s office
The trio was among several Black Dragons arrested last year
during an interagency task force sweep of members of the gang. The
Federal Bureau of Investigation and more than a dozen other law
enforcement agencies were involved in the investigations and arrests
last July. The three convicted today are among the first to stand
trial although other cases are pending later this year.
After two days deliberation, a jury in the court of Judge Larry
Paul Fidler convicted Tony Phoutthachak, 20; Cham Hoang, 22; and
Johnson Le, 20, of the murder of Binh Quan Huynh. Phoutthachak was
convicted of first-degree murder and the others of second-degree
murder. Hoang also was convicted of two additional counts of
dissuading witnesses in 2003 and one count of assault with a
semi-automatic firearm. The jury also found the crimes were
committed to benefit a street gang.
The defendants return to Judge Fidler’s court on July 19 for
sentencing. Phoutthachak faces a 26-year-to life sentence and Le a
15-year-to life sentence. Hoang, whose gang moniker is "Ruthless,"
faces three life sentences because of the convictions involving the
A fourth defendant, Danny Ng. 19, pleaded guilty earlier this
year and was sentenced to 13 years in state prison.
Deputy District Attorney May Chung of the Hardcore Gang
Division’s Asian Gang Unit handled the prosecution. She also is
involved in the prosecution of others arrested and charged last
The FBI and Los Angeles and Monterey Park police departments were
involved in the investigation of the Little Tokyo murder, which
occurred on Dec. 15, 2002.
Those charged in other cases include Khoanh A. Lam, 36, the
leader of the Black Dragons who goes by the street moniker
"Ah-Sing," and the No. 2 person in the gang, Minh Trang Tran, 51,
known as "Ah-Ming." Lam, Tran, Hoang and fourth gang member who
remains a fugitive are charged with conspiracy to commit murder,
attempted murder and solicitation of murder in connection with
attacks on two people in September 2001. A date for the trial, to be
held in Pasadena Superior Court, has not yet been scheduled.