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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    25 arrested in sweeping indictment of L.A. gang tied to Mexican Mafia

    25 arrested in sweeping indictment of L.A. gang tied to Mexican Mafia

    A suspect is processed in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday morning as authorities moved to arrest gang members indicted under the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization statutes. (Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)


    By JOSEPH SERNA, RICHARD WINTON, VERONICA ROCHA contact the reporters

    Gang Activity

    Federal prosecutors to announce sweeping indictment against Eastside gang with ties to Mexican Mafia
    At least 38 members of Big Hazard gang indicted under federal RICO statutes, officials say


    Twenty-five members of an East Los Angeles street gang were arrested and five more were being tracked as fugitives as hundreds of agents swarmed the Eastside on Wednesday in an operation authorities said was aimed at weakening a gang that has been rooted in the community for decades, authorities said.

    lRelated
    L.A. NOW 41 people tied to El Monte gang linked to Mexican Mafia are indicted SEE ALL RELATED

    The gang has been active in Boyle Heights for 50 years, officials said, describing the raid as a "day of accountability."

    Document
    Suspected Big Hazard gang members indicted OPEN LINK

    Federal prosecutors announced a sweeping indictment Wednesday morning against the Boyle Heights-based street gang, which they say has “deep ties” to the Mexican Mafia prison gang.

    At least 38 members of the Big Hazard gang were indicted under the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) statutes, federal officials said. Two dozen or more members are expected to be arrested.


    LIVE BLOG: FBI gang sweep in Los Angeles


    About 800 law enforcement agents were making arrests and conducting searches across the Eastside on Wednesday, the U.S. attorney’s office announced. A news conference is scheduled for 11 a.m. to release details of an indictment filed in federal court.


    The Mexican Mafia is the most powerful prison gang in California and carries influence with many other gangs while maintaining ties to Mexican drug cartels.


    According to the indictment, the Eastside gang distributes methamphetamine, phencyclidine (PCP), crack cocaine, heroin and other controlled substances in neighborhoods it controls. Drug sales are a major revenue maker for the gang.


    To maintain control of drug sales, members conduct surveillance on police and rivals and maintain a cache of firearms, the indictment says.


    The gang is known to “brand” their criminal acts by shouting references to their gang before or during a crime to cause fear, the indictment continues. The are known to tag using Hazard-related symbols.


    The gang uses murder, assault and threats to keep its members, associates and other Latino gangs in line, prosecutors said. The Mexican Mafia gives the gang the go-ahead to carry out the attacks, they said.


    Gangs also harass, assault and threaten rival gangs and outsiders, including police and African Americans, the indictment says.


    The indictment states that the gang “is governed by a set of unwritten rules, which are often violently enforced.” Its leaders rely on women and teens to traffic drugs and carry out gang activity, according to the document.


    For breaking California news, follow @JosephSerna.

    Los Angeles Times
    UPDATE

    11:45 a.m.: This post has been updated with the number of suspected gang members arrested or being sought as fugitives.
    10:03 a.m.: This post has been updated to add details from the indictment.
    This post was originally published at 8:17 a.m.

    http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/l...210-story.html

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