Kenneth 'Supreme' McGriff Found Guilty Of Murder Conspiracy
After five days of deliberation, McGriff, 46, was convicted in a federal death penalty case for ordering the murders of Queens rapper E-Money Bags (born Eric Smith) and Troy Singleton, his associate, two years after E shot and killed one of McGriff's friends in a 1999 dispute. Singleton was apparently targeted because McGriff feared he would retaliate.
After founding the Supreme Team, a notorious Queens drug crew in the early 80's, and after an earlier prison sentence for drugs, McGriff pursued his dream of producing movies and music and teamed with Irv "Gotti" Lorenzo, a neighborhood friend who headed Murder Inc.
But according to prosecutors, McGriff resumed his drug dealing operations in both New York and Baltimore, and instead used Murder Inc. to launder more than $1 million in proceeds.
McGriff was originally indicted along with Lorenzo and Lorenzo's brother Chris, a Murder Inc. executive. After being granted a separate trial, the brothers were acquitted in 2005 of money-laundering charges.
"That man sitting in the courtroom is one of the most dangerous, feared, ruthless gangsters in all of Queens," prosecutor Carolyn Pokorney said during closing arguments. "And when Supreme gets in a fight with somebody ... he doesn't go to the cops. He doesn't hire a lawyer. He hires a hit team to assassinate them, to blow them away, so that their moms can barely recognize them when they go down to the morgue."
Though SOHH originally reported that McGriff faced life in prison with no parole, after U.S. District Judge Frederic Block determined Supreme did not warrant a death sentence last month, Supreme's verdict is unclear.
McGriff was acquitted on lesser drugs and weapons charges.