Eight gang members nabbed in crackdown in San Gabriel Valley

09:33, June 09, 2010      

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Federal and local law enforcement agencies have arrested eight members including an alleged kingpin of a notorious drug gang in the San Gabriel Valley in eastern Los Angeles Tuesday,sending a strong signal to other gang members.

"Today's arrests send the message that law enforcement will continue to work together to take back our neighborhoods and get violent drug traffickers and gangs off our streets," said Timothy J. Landrum of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

The arrests stem from a 22-count federal racketeering and narcotics indictment naming 17 defendants, according to Thom Mrozek, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Four of the defendants are eligible for the death penalty if convicted of the 2006 killing of a rival, and the remaining 13 face 20 years to life without parole if found guilty, Mrozek said.

The indictment targeted Puente-13, a 600-member gang formed 60 years ago that claims a large portion of La Puente as its turf, as well as unincorporated parts of the San Gabriel Valley and portions of nearby cities such as Hacienda Heights, Walnut and West Covina, Mrozek noted.

The indictment contends the gang, which is aligned with the Mexican Mafia, is currently controlled by alleged Mexican Mafia member Rafael Munoz Gonzalez who was among those picked up Tuesday, according to Mrozek.

In addition to the eight arrested this morning, seven defendants were already in custody, the authorities said.

Source:Xinhua

(Editor:intern1)

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