A ranking member of a prominent white supremacist gang whose code allegedly requires members to attack sex offenders, has been sentenced to prison for raping two teenage girls.
Lee Ervin Heyen will serve at least 20 years and up to life behind bars, Utah Judge Todd Shaughnessy ordered Friday, according to the Deseret News in Utah.
Hayden was originally charged with having sex four times with a 15-year-old girl he sold drugs to between May 1 and July 21, 2015. She told police Heyen "was her drug dealer who she spent a lot of time together smoking marijuana" with, according to KSL.com, the local NBC affiliate in St. Lake City.
After Heyen asked her why she spent so much time with him, and she said she thought he was “cool,” Heyen had sex with her, police said. Heyen knew her age, the girl told police, because she is friends with his 15-year-old son.
While those charges were pending, Heyen was charged with raping another teen girl who sold drugs for him. That girl, who was between 14 and 16 at the time, told police that Heyen "told her if she did not have sex with him he would harm her family," according to KSL.com.
A jury found Heyen guilty in June of five counts of rape, but acquitted him of two other rape charges. He also was found guilty of three counts of drug distribution, according to the Deseret News.
Heyen was identified by federal prosecutors in 2003 as a sergeant in the Soldiers of Aryan Culture, a white supremacist gang whose primary mission was to sell drugs, according to the indictment against him and 11 other members of the group.
Heyen pleaded guilty to racketeering and assault with a deadly weapon and was sentenced to just under four years in federal prison followed by three years of supervised probation. Heyen was sentenced to two more years in federal prison in March, plus an additional year of supervised release, for violating the conditions of his original supervised release, according to the Deseret News.
The Soldiers of Aryan Culture has ranks, like the military, according to the 2003 indictment. Tracy Swena created the organization and is a general, the indictment says, while Heyen holds the rank of a sergeant. Heyen is known as “Dallas” within the group.
SAC members are required to read white supremacist literature, and can't cooperate with law enforcement or engage in "race mixing" unless leaders approve it. Their code of conduct also says they must attack all known sex offenders and snitches, according to the indictment.
If members of SAC ever denounce the group or walk away, they can be killed, the indictment says. The gang is particularly strong in Utah prisons, where Heyen is headed.
[Photo: St. Lake County Sheriff’s Office]