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Orange County

7 Arrested in Westminster Gang Slaying

July 27, 2001|JENNIFER MENA | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Westminster police Thursday arrested seven men they said are suspects in an attack that led to the death of a gang member.

In an unusual twist, six men from the dead man's gang were arrested in connection with his March 13 death because police said they provoked a rival gang member to kill him.

The rival gang member was identified as Sang Ho, 19, of Santa Ana. Investigators allege that he fired shots that killed Andy Do.

Friends of Do who were arrested are Son H.K. Nguyen, 20, and Tuan Tran, 21, both of Garden Grove; Lan Nuu Pham, 26, of Huntington Beach; Nhat B. Thai, 23, of Orange; David Le, 18, of Westminster; and a 17-year-old whose identity was not released because of his age.

Westminster Police Sgt. Mark Nye gave this account of the killing:

Do and his fellow gang members, seeking revenge against Ho and his gang, armed themselves with clubs, barbells, tire irons, knives and possibly a gun, then drove to Bolsa Avenue and Magnolia Street in Little Saigon.

At 5 p.m., they spotted their rivals in front of the Mat Nhung Cafe. They jumped out of three cars and approached the men, who belonged to two rival gangs.

Ho fired several shots and struck Do in the head. Another man also sustained bullet wounds.

Nye said police chose to file murder charges against members of Do's gang because when they initiated their attack, they knew that provoking their rivals could lead to a death.

Six suspects are being held at Orange County Jail. The 17-year-old is at Orange County Juvenile Hall.

The juvenile and five adults were arrested on suspicion of murder, assault with a deadly weapon, gang enhancement and street terrorism.

The suspected shooter, Ho, was charged with being a gang member in possession of a gun, being on probation while in possession of a firearm, and with street terrorism and gang enhancement, Nye said.

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