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Gang task force targets Mexican Mafia in California

5:44 AM, Sep 25, 2013   |    comments
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SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) -- Dozens of alleged gang members were arrested Tuesday across three Southland counties in a major raid targeting street gangs with ties to the Mexican Mafia.

More than 800 law enforcement officers took part in the raids as part of "Operation Smokin' Aces" on Tuesday morning. This was a joint operation between federal agents and local authorities in Orange County.

Beginning at 6 a.m., arrests were made at approximately 70 locations throughout Orange, Riverside and Los Angeles counties, authorities said.

It was a culmination of 2.5-year investigation. A total of 129 defendants have been named in indictments issued by county and federal grand juries, and charges include federal racketeering, conspiracy to commit murder, extortion, narcotic trafficking and gun trafficking.

"Federal and local law enforcement here in Orange County have joined forces to surgically target the leaders and operatives of the Mexican mafia and to sever its influence over streets gangs responsible for far too much menace and mayhem in our neighborhoods," said U.S. Attorney Andre Birotte, Jr.

KABC Los Angeles

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