A superseding indictment has been unsealed in federal court in Brooklyn charging John Martin, Brandon Daniels, Lamonte Johnson, Shi Zhen Lin and Corey Mobley with conspiring to commit robberies in Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and New Jersey, committing and threatening to commit physical violence in furtherance of a May 4, 2019 home-invasion robbery in Little Neck, Queens, and brandishing a firearm during the Queens robbery. Mobley is also charged with five counts relating to a March 2019 robbery of a drug dealer. Lin was arrested this afternoon and will be arraigned via videoconference tomorrow before United States District Judge Raymond J. Dearie. Daniels was arrested on December 8, 2020 and was ordered detained pending trial. Mobley and Martin, who are in federal custody, were previously arraigned and ordered detained. Johnson is in state custody and will be arraigned at a later date.
Seth D. DuCharme, Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, John B. DeVito, Special Agent-in-Charge, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, New York Field Office (ATF), and Dermot F. Shea, Commissioner, New York City Police Department (NYPD), announced the charges and arrests.
“As our charges allege, the defendants targeted and terrorized numerous victims at gun point, including a family inside their home in Queens where two of the defendants sexually assaulted a woman,” stated Acting United States Attorney DuCharme. “With this prosecution, the defendants’ crime spree has been put to an end. This Office will continue to commit our people and our resources to bringing to justice those who participate in such brutal crimes.” Mr. DuCharme extended his grateful appreciation to the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision, Office of Special Investigations for its assistance in the investigation.
“These defendants, as alleged, terrorized communities from eastern Long Island to New Jersey. But thanks to the dedication of the men and woman of the ATF/NYPD Joint Robbery Task Force, all five now face life sentences in federal prison,”stated ATF Special Agent-in-Charge DeVito.
As set forth in the indictment and other court filings, in May 2019 during the commission of a home invasion robbery in Little Neck, Queens, the defendants allegedly held a group of eight women and children at gunpoint. Mobley and Daniels forced the screaming occupants into a downstairs bedroom, dragging an elderly woman who could not walk and the child she was holding across the floor. Mobley threatened to kill all of the occupants if they did not reveal where money was in the house, and Mobley and Daniels sexually assaulted one of the victims. Although the defendants expected to find tens of thousands of dollars in the home, they found only a few thousand dollars that one victim had set aside as a gift to her family. Mobley and Daniels were later identified by law enforcement through DNA left at the scene. A substantial portion of the crime was recorded on surveillance cameras located inside and outside the home.
The Queens robbery was part of a string of robberies and attempted robberies allegedly committed by the defendants over a three-month period from March to May 2019. Lin’s role was to identify robbery victims for Martin, Mobley and Daniels. Johnson recruited Lin and Martin to participate in the robberies, with the expectation that he would get a share of the proceeds.
The charges in the indictment are allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted of the charged offenses, the defendants face a maximum sentence of life in prison.
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. The Department of Justice reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of its renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorneys’ Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally based strategies to reduce violent crime. The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Organized Crime and Gangs Section. Assistant United States Attorneys Jonathan Siegel and Michael W. Gibaldi are in charge of the prosecution.
JOHN MARTIN (also known as “Lil John” and “LJ”)
Brooklyn, New York
Brooklyn, New York
Auburn, New York
SHI ZHEN LIN (also known as “Kevin Lin” and “Kev”)
Maspeth, New York
Brooklyn, New York
E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 19-CR-221 (S-3)