Crime & Justice

Ex-gang member says he was triggerman in Mexican Mafia drug 'tax' killing


A Southern California man has acknowledged killing a gang member who failed to pay the Mexican Mafia a "tax" on drug sales.

Federal prosecutors say Eddie Garcia of Baldwin Park acknowledged the killing in a plea deal. He also pleaded guilty Wednesday to conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and faces up to 24 years in federal prison.

Authorities say Garcia acknowledged that in 2006 he shot a member of the San Gabriel Valley-based Puente-13 street gang in the head. The killing had been unsolved.

Prosecutors say David Dragna of Valinda was suspected of taking drug money intended for the Mexican Mafia, a prison gang that controlled Puente-13 and extorted money from its illicit drug sales.

Two other people previously were convicted of taking part in the murder.