United States Attorney's Office for the Western District of Missouri

06/21/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 06/21/2024 16:57

Leader, Members of Galloping Goose Motorcycle Club Indicted for Criminal Racketeering Enterprise

Press Release

Leader, Members of Galloping Goose Motorcycle Club Indicted for Criminal Racketeering Enterprise

Friday, June 21, 2024
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Missouri
Among Seven Area Residents Charged with Violent Crime, Drug Trafficking, Firearms Violations

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - Seven area residents, including the leader and several members of the Galloping Goose Motorcycle Club, have been indicted by a federal grand jury for their roles in an ongoing criminal enterprise that involved acts of violence, drug trafficking, and illegally possessing firearms.

Tonka Way Con Ponder, 53, and his wife, Carolynn L. Ponder, 47, both of Preston, Mo., and Tretch Lucius Lawrence, also known as "Travis Dewain Shankle," 48, Keith Dewayne Nolen Jr., also known as "Seg," 34, Paul Leon Gardner, 52, Daniel Scot Kurtzenborn, 41, and Robert Russell Warren, also known as "Russ," 54, all of whom have unknown addresses, were charged in a 25-count indictment returned under seal by a federal grand jury in Jefferson City on Tuesday, June 18.

That indictment was unsealed and made public today following the arrests of six of the defendants (with the exception of Warren). Tonka Ponder, Lawrence, Nolen and Kurtzeborn remain detained in federal custody pending a detention hearing on Tuesday, June 25. Gardner and Carolynn Ponder were released on bond.

The federal indictment alleges that Tonka Ponder, Lawrence, Nolen, Gardner and Kurtzeborn are members of the Lake of the Ozarks chapter of the Galloping Goose outlaw motorcycle gang, an organized criminal enterprise. Members of the Galloping Goose, says the indictment, engaged in acts of violence, including assault, attempted robbery, and extortion.

According to the indictment, Tonka Ponder was the leader of the local chapter of the Galloping Goose, which has a clubhouse in Camdenton, Mo.

The federal indictment charges Tonka Ponder, Lawrence, Shankle, Nolen, Kurtzeborn and Gardner with committing a violent crime in aid of racketeering. They allegedly assaulted another person with a deadly weapon on Dec. 12, 2020.

The federal indictment charges Tonka Ponder, Lawrence, Nolen, and Kurtzeborn with committing a violent crime in aid of racketeering. They allegedly conspired to assault members of the Mongols Motorcycle Club and the Iron Celtics Motorcycle Association, resulting in serious physical injuries, on July 15, 2021.

Tonka Ponder is charged with two counts of committing a violent crime in aid of racketeering and two counts of discharging a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence. Tonka Ponder allegedly shot two persons, resulting in serious physical injury, on July 15, 2021.

Kurtzeborn is charged with one count of committing a violent crime in aid of racketeering and one count of discharging a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence. Kurtzeborn allegedly attempted to assault a victim by shooting at him on July 15, 2021.

Tonka Ponder and Lawrence are charged with one count of attempted extortion. The indictment alleges that, from July 1, 2020, to July 15, 2021, they attempted to obtain the property of the Iron Celtics Motorcycle Association by threatened use of force, violence, and fear.

The federal indictment charges Tonka Ponder, Carolynn Ponder, and Warren with participating in a conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine in Camden and Miller Counties from Aug. 1 to Oct. 31, 2022. Tonka Ponder is also charged with five counts of distributing methamphetamine, one count of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime, and four counts of traveling across state lines to facilitate the illegal distribution of methamphetamine.

Tonka Ponder is charged with two counts of using his cell phone to facilitate a drug-trafficking conspiracy. Carolynn Ponder is charged with one count of using her cell phone to facilitate a drug-trafficking conspiracy.

Kurtzeborn and Nolen are each charged with one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. Kurtzeborn allegedly possessed a Taurus .357-caliber revolver on July 15, 2021. Nolen allegedly possessed a Taurus 9mm handgun on Aug. 24, 2023.

The charges contained in this indictment are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Aaron M. Maness and Cecily L. Hicks. It was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the FBI, the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the Lake of the Ozarks, Mo., Police Department, the Miller County, Mo., Sheriff's Department, and the Camden County, Mo., Sheriff's Department.

Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force

This case is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

Updated June 21, 2024
Topics
Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses
Violent Crime