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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT:
August 11, 2005

District of New Jersey
Deputy U.S. Marshal Bill Cannon, (
973) 424-6168 or
USMS Headquarters Public Affairs, (202) 307-9065

 
FAMED BASKERVILLE MURDER CASE FINALLY
ADDED TO U.S. MARSHALS “15 MOST WANTED FUGITIVES” MANHUNT

Rakeem BASKERVILLEWashington D.C. – Gangs, drugs, death comprise a trident that pierces the heart of major cities like Newark, NJ. Local authorities there believe that gang member Rakeem Baskerville, 30, was involved in all three activities, however, he has eluded capture for 17 months. Today, U.S. Marshals added his name to their national “15 MOST WANTED FUGITIVES” list. Baskerville is a member of the notorious “ET-Hak” gang and allegedly has murdered two government witnesses and participated in major distributions of cocaine and heroin.

On March 1, 2004, a prosecution witness to a homicide was slain in a hail of bullets during a drive-by shooting in Newark. The next day, another government witness was stalked and murdered by a gang of killers. Once again, the cause of death was multiple gunshot wounds. Newark police believe Baskerville pulled the trigger in the first slaying and was involved in the second. He faces charges for murder, conspiracy to commit murder, and firearms violations.

A federal grand jury in Newark also indicted Baskerville, and other gang members, on charges brought by the Drug Enforcement Administration. Those charges include a five-year drug conspiracy involving the distribution of kilogram quantities of cocaine and heroin, laundering the illegal proceeds through the purchase of luxury automobiles and jewelry, firearms violations, and allegations that members of the organization threatened, intimidated and arranged to murder persons whom they believed were cooperating with law enforcement.

“U.S. Marshals have a long tradition of helping local police get fugitives like Rakeem Baskerville off the street and in front of a judge,” said Acting Director John Clark of the U.S. Marshals. “It’s our experience that when such individuals are on the run, they become an even greater menace to society.”

New Jersey Marshal James Plousis said Baskerville has a violent criminal history, including five felony convictions for aggravated assault, robberies, firearms and drugs. “We are offering up to $25,000 for information directly leading to Baskerville’s arrest,” said Plousis. “I have not seen a fugitive who is potentially more dangerous to the citizens of New Jersey than this gang member,” he said. “Deputy Marshals and our excellent partners on the Newark Police investigations team ask that anyone with information about Rakeem Baskerville’s whereabouts contact the nearest U.S. Marshals office, or call our 24-0hour phone line at 1-800-336-0101.”

Baskerville is a black male with brown eyes and black hair. He has a noticeable scar above his left eye. He is 5’ 9” tall and weighs 195 pounds. His wanted poster is on the U.S. Marshals website, www.usmarshals.gov.