On Wednesday, federal agents and the police arrested more than one hundred suspected gang members in San Diego and surrounding counties. They were arrested in a major operation on charges that include weapon violations and drug trafficking. Charges included drug trafficking in cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine, federal firearms violations, and conspiracy.
These arrests came as violent crimes in the San Diego area decreased slightly. The number of violent crimes decreased from two thousand seven hundred seventy-three in 2010 to two thousand four hundred eighty-two in 2011. There were a total of eight criminal complaints and seventeen federal grand jury indictments filed in Federal Court against one hundred nineteen people who were part of the operation. There still twelve people who are at large but the rest have been arrested. If they are convicted they are facing prison terms of five years to life.
These arrests came more than a year after three investigations that involved using wiretaps. Among those that were arrested were to major Mexican Mafia members. According to information received, the street gangs were paying tariffs to the Mexican Mafia in return for being allowed to conduct gang business. This is one of the largest single takedowns ever done that involved the FBI office in San Diego.