Final defendant in ‘Asian Boyz’ case sentenced to 218 years
All other members serving life sentences
The Asian Boyz bloody murder spree in 1995 and 1996 came to a conclusion this week when a Los Angeles Superior Court judge sentenced the final defendant to 218 years to life in state prison.
Pierre Mercado, 38, who holed up in the Philippines for a decade before being caught and extradited to Los Angeles, was sentenced by Judge Curtis Rappe. Judge Rappe presided over Mercado’s jury trial that ended early this month with four first-degree murder convictions, along with five attempted premeditated murders and two aggravated kidnappings. Jurors also found true gun and gang allegations.
The defendant was the last Asian Boyz member to be convicted of series of gang-motivated shootings in the San Gabriel and San Fernando valleys, as well as near Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Deputy District Attorney Eugene Hanrahan, who with Deputy District Attorney Hoon Chun prosecuted the case, said the gang launched a killing spree to instill fear in rival gang members.
Pierre Mercado, known on the street as “Boo Boo,” and his older brother, Marvin, fled to the Philippines after the murders and were returned to Los Angeles in 2007. Marvin Mercado was convicted of eight gang murders at an earlier separate trial and is serving multiple life prison terms.
Seven other Asian Boyz were tried and convicted in 1999. All are serving life terms in state prison.
The murders for which Pierre Mercado was convicted included three young men who were gunned down near the San Bernardino Freeway in El Monte in August 1995 when they were mistaken as members of a Chinese-based gang, two Marines who were fired upon in July 1995 while in an open-air jeep near LAX and the March 1996 murder of one young man and the wounding of another at a San Fernando Valley party.
Other gang members were convicted and are serving time for various additional killings and other crimes that occurred during the gang’s bloody rampage through Los Angeles County.
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — Virgin America airline began offering flights between Los Angeles International Airport and Las Vegas today, and touted the service with a sale of tickets for as low as $39 each way.
Passengers on the inaugural flight from LAX to Las Vegas were given the red-carpet treatment upon arrival, and airline officials, including company founder Sir Richard Branson and Virgin America CEO David Cush, will host a celebration tonight at The Cosmopolitan hotel/casino on the Las Vegas Strip.
LOS ANGELES, Calif.—Fire and smoke billowed from Los Angeles International Airport this morning during a Los Angeles Fire Department exercise.
The drill began at 4 a.m. and was scheduled to last until 6:30 a.m., according to authorities who said the smoke and flames would be visible for more than 30 miles.
"There is no cause for public alarm," said fire department spokesman Erik Scott.
LOS ANGELES, Calif.—LAX is safer today than it was after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, thanks to $1.6 billion spent on improving security over the past decade, but the airport needs better communication between police agencies, a report released today said.
The Federal Transit Administration gave the approval for construction to begin on Metro’s $1.76 billion light rail line along Crenshaw Boulevard that will run from the Green Line near Los Angeles International Airport to the Expo Line.
The FTA approved the final environmental impact report for the 8.5-mile line. The report still needs approval by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which is expected to vote on the report at its Sept. 22 board meeting.
LOS ANGELES, Calif.—The Metropolitan Transportation Authority will hold the first of three meetings tonight aimed at gathering public input on ways to connect the Metro transit system to Los Angeles International Airport.
The agency will be soliciting comments on proposals such as extending a rail line to the airport or using a people-mover system or Bus Rapid Transit ramps.