ICE Agents Arrest 22 South Florida Gang Members

POSTED: 3:11 pm EST March 10, 2006

MIAMI -- Twenty-two South Florida gang members are behind bars.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement special agents have charged 17 of them for being illegally in the U.S. They are in ICE custody awaiting the outcome of their cases. The other five arrested are U.S. citizens, charged with state and local violations.

ICE launched Operation Community Shield to disrupt and dismantle transnational, violent street gangs throughout the country. Since its start one year ago, agents say there have been almost 2,400 members of about 240 different gangs arrested nationwide.

Among those arrested in South Florida were: 18-year-old Luis Reyes of the "18th Street" gang, convicted of grand theft; and MS 13 gang member, 20-year-old Julio Budde. He was convicted of weapons and drug-related charges. Budde is also part of an ongoing investigation being conducted by the Palm Beach Sheriff's Office.