14 February – LAWFUEL – The Law News Network – A former correctional officer who worked at the California Institute for Men in Chino was convicted this afternoon on federal racketeering charges for assisting the Nazi Low Riders (NLR) prison gang by helping members distribute narcotics and assault inmates.
Shayne Allyn Ziska, 44, of Fontana, was convicted of three federal charges: participating in a Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) conspiracy, violent crime in aid of racketeering (VICAR) and deprivation of rights under color of law. Ziska was found guilty by United States District Judge Terry J. Hatter Jr., who presided over a two-week bench trial.
The NLR is a white supremacist organization with a philosophy centered on “racial pride.” The NLR controls a significant portion of the illegal activities committed by white inmates in California’s prisons. Ziska assisted the NLR by engaging in a series of acts that include conspiring to distribute drugs such as methamphetamine and heroin. Judge Hatter also found that Ziska allowed an NLR member to assault an inmate by stabbing him underneath his eye.
Ziska, who was placed on administrative leave by the California Department of Corrections in 2000, is scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Hatter on May 8. At sentencing, Ziska faces a maximum possible sentence of 50 years in federal prison.
The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which received assistance from the California Office of the Inspector General.
CONTACT: Assistant United States Attorneys Adam D. Kamenstein
Assistant United States Attorney Kevin Lally