A Bronx man was convicted earlier this month of murder for hire, drug trafficking and firearms offenses and faces life in prison.
On Aug. 4, Sydney Scales, a.k.a “Moe Black,” was charged with murder-for-hire conspiracy, narcotics conspiracy, a firearms offense and two counts of distributing crack cocaine. He will be sentenced Nov. 18.
“Sydney Scales was the leader of a violent drug operation that peddled drugs and brought guns and violence to our streets,” said U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss. “Scales caused at least one drug-related shooting, and he hired a hitman in an attempt to murder rival drug dealers who were having a barbecue in front of a neighborhood barbershop. We continue our daily work with our law enforcement partners to keep our communities safe by vigorously investigating and prosecuting acts of violence and drug trafficking.”
According to the investigation, between 2016 and 2019, Scales, 42, of the Bronx, participated in a conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine, powder cocaine, heroin, fentanyl and marijuana in the Bronx and elsewhere. He allegedly also used, carried and possessed firearms, which were brandished and discharged, in connection with the narcotics conspiracy and aided and abetted such firearms offenses.
For example, the government offered evidence that on Dec. 1, 2016, Scales caused a shooting at rival drug dealers standing in front of a convenience store located next to the entrance of the West Farms subway station.
In addition, in June 2017, Scales conspired to commit murder for hire, agreeing to compensate another individual in return for locating and killing at least one rival drug dealer.