Accused killer D’Monte should be sent to Canada: U.S. Attorney

After 11 years on the run, Conor D’Monte was arrested last February in a suburb of San Juan, Puerto Rico, with a firearm in his possession.

Article content

A violent gang war in the Lower Mainland in the late 2000s was highlighted at an extradition hearing Friday in Puerto Rico for one of the men alleged to be involved.

Article content

U.S. Magistrate Judge Marshal D. Morgan heard that the UN gang was battling over drug turf with their rivals in the Red Scorpions, including brothers Jonathan, Jarrod and Jamie Bacon.

Article content

UN gangster Conor D’Monte not only plotted to kill the Bacons and other Scorpions, but he was also part of the hunt and even put up some of the reward money, Assistant U.S. Attorney Julian Radzinschi told Morgan.

After 11 years on the run, D’Monte was arrested last February in a suburb of San Juan, Puerto Rico, with a firearm in his possession. He had been living there for years under the alias Johnny Williams, volunteering for a honeybee charity and playing beach tennis almost daily.

Conor D’Monte, aka Johnny Williams, working on a bee education centre in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Photo: Exclusive to Postmedia.
Conor D’Monte, aka Johnny Williams, working on a bee education centre in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Photo: Exclusive to Postmedia. Photo by Submitted photo /PNG

The Vancouver native was charged in January 2011 with murder and conspiracy in the February 2009 slaying of Red Scorpion Kevin LeClair and the broader plot in 2008 and ’09 to murder rival gangsters.

Article content

Radzinschi said the extradition package provided by the Canadian government last April highlighted considerable evidence implicating D’Monte, including DNA, surveillance videos and photographs, and witness statements from former associates turned Crown witnesses.

“And as mentioned in this document, the statements of the co-operating witnesses that are in the affidavit of facts are corroborated in part of the interior material amassed in the investigation,” he told Morgan, as D’Monte listened inside the courtroom.

Postmedia News was able to monitor the hearing remotely, as was a member of the RCMP.

The U.S. government attorney described the bloody conflict between the Red Scorpions and the UN both before and after UN founder Clay Roueche was arrested in the U.S. in May 2008. He was later convicted of drug smuggling and money laundering, and is serving a 24-year sentence.

Article content

“After that arrest, as indicated by co-operators, the fugitive was chosen as the leader of the UN gang. And as boss of the UN gang the fugitive could decide who gets murdered and he pushed UN gang members to `get’ the Bacon brothers,” Radzinschi said.

“Under the fugitive’s leadership the attempts to murder the Bacon brothers entered essentially a new phase, a more aggressive phase that included better intelligence gathering, the organization of a hit team that was basically sent to target the Bacon brothers and their associates.”

He said the gang maintained a list of names, addresses, vehicle licence plate, makes and models of Scorpion vehicles, “which was mainly compiled by the fugitive.”

When UN killers Cory Vallee and Jesse Adkins gunned down LeClair in a Langley parking lot on Feb. 6, 2009, it was D’Monte who passed the news around to others in the gang and “then the fugitive arranged for payment to be made to Cory Vallee and Jesse Adkins for the murder,” Radzinschi said.

Article content

He said the U.S. government had “met its burden” for D’Monte’s surrender to Canada.

“In conclusion, we request this honourable court to order that this fugitive Conor Vincent D’Monte be certified for extradition to Canada.”

D’Monte’s lawyer, Andrew McCutcheon, restated his argument Friday that the fugitive should be able to review the actual evidence collected against him instead of relying on an affidavit by Det. Terrence Murphy summarizing the case. Morgan ruled against McCutcheon’s earlier application for discovery in October 2022.

“It’s our view that the introduction of summarized summaries of information through an affidavit of police official is insufficient to meet the demands of the treaty,” McCutcheon said. “In our view, the Murphy affidavit is highly suspect. Addressing it generally, the affidavit purportedly summarizes summaries of information provided by three co-operating witnesses. The notion of summarizing summaries is almost an impossible and absurd act. The summary is also being provided by a person with a clear agenda who has no desire to include facts and circumstances that may allow for a fair and impartial evaluation over the evidence in the case.”

Article content

Morgan said he would issue a written ruling in the case “as quickly as possible.”

He also noted how unusual the extradition case was in Puerto Rico.

“In my research and preparing for this over the past couple of months, I’ve been told that since the ’70s, I think there’s only been six, perhaps seven, extradition hearings in this district.”

Support our journalism: Our in-depth journalism is possible thanks to the support of our subscribers. For just $3.50 per week, you can get unlimited, ad-lite access to The Vancouver Sun, The Province, National Post and 13 other Canadian news sites. Support us by subscribing today: The Vancouver Sun | The Province.


Postmedia is committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour for moderation before appearing on the site. We ask you to keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have enabled email notifications—you will now receive an email if you receive a reply to your comment, there is an update to a comment thread you follow or if a user you follow comments. Visit our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to adjust your email settings.

Leave a Reply