Who are the Lake Boyz?
They’re a gang, and a bunch of news outlets in Southwest Florida are talking about them because 23 guys affiliated with the gang were arrested last year. Now, they are going to trial for racketeering and corruption this week.
A racketeer is someone who obtains money by an illegal enterprise, usually involving intimidation. Typical gang activity falls under that umbrella.
The Fort Myers Police Department has been following this gang since the 1990’s. 21 of them were arrested as part of Operation Great Lakes.
They gained popularity on social media, by posting music videos and starting a string of hashtags on Instagram.
The gang really hit the spotlight after popular NFL plater Sammy Watkins’ younger brother Jari McMiller was arrested in affiliation with the group.
There’s a lot of layers to the Lake Boyz history, and the trial this week will no doubt add to it.
Reporting by Gabriela Milian