Feds, police stage major gang bust in county

MV police assisted in raids; 14 Santa Clara County locations targeted

Federal and local law enforcement agencies on Thursday raided 14 locations in Santa Clara County and arrested suspected gang members on suspicion of drug and weapons charges, an FBI spokesman said.

The raids began at 6 a.m. Jan. 30 with officers serving search and arrest warrants at businesses and residences "to disrupt gang activity in relation to organized criminal groups," FBI spokesman Peter Lee said.

Some people were arrested on allegations including illegal drug and possession of firearms, but it was not clear this afternoon how many were taken into custody, Lee said. About 20 people were targeted by the officers.

The suspects were arrested without incident, Lee said.

One of the businesses officers entered was a tattoo parlor on 10th and East William streets in San Jose, about a block south of San Jose State University, Lee said.

Not many details of the raids can be released publicly because much of the information remains under seal and the enforcement effort is still active, Lee said.

The FBI, the Drug Enforcement Agency and the Department of Homeland Security took part in the raids with officers from the California Highway Patrol and the San Jose, Milpitas, Mountain View, Morgan Hill, Sunnyvale and Santa Clara police departments, Lee said.

The agencies are part of the FBI's Santa Clara County Violent Gang Task Force trying to suppress gang activities, Lee said.

According to a Nov. 21 news release on the FBI's website, the task force previously arrested 10 men and women on federal drug trafficking charges from an effort "targeting gang members selling methamphetamine in Santa Clara County."

Among those arrested and later charged in connection with that earlier incident with distributing and conspiring to distribute methamphetamine were Maria Salinas, reputed matriarch of a Sureno gang called 8th Street Gilroy, and brothers Jairo and Filiberto Quintana, allegedly affiliated with the Sureno gang, the Varrio Mexicanos Locos, according to the FBI.

Others charged last year included a mother and daughter combination, Laura "Blinky" Garcia and Vanessa "Bunny" Pulido, associated with the Sureno gang, Varrio Sur Town, and other defendants who were known members and associates of the Sureno gangs Colonias, Poco Way, and Varrio Paisanos Locos, the FBI said.

— Bay City News Service


Like this comment
Posted by Susan
a resident of Castro City
on Jan 31, 2014 at 2:35 pm

So glad to hear that there is a coordinated effort to quell this epidemic. I hope the officers remain safe during this type of activity. I do not know the statistics but I am willing to bet that 80% of crime is connected to gangs. I hope to continue to be able to walk in my neighborhood at night without fear.

Like this comment
Posted by Rich
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Jan 31, 2014 at 2:50 pm

They can do this until half the population of the country are convicted felons, and it still won't work. How many young men and women must die on both sides of this crazy "war" before people realize that prohibition just doesn't work. The only way to end the power of the gangs is to remove their source of funding. The only way to do that is to make drugs legal. So many good things can then happen. People who need help can seek it without fear of being kicked out of society by a criminal record. People who would be attracted to a life of crime won't have nearly the attraction. Cops can turn their attention to other crimes. Many, many enforcement $ can be saved by the taxpayers. Users can be safer with a more dependable supply.

All that against what? Perhaps a few who might not have would get hooked, but not likely many more than those who would be saved. Police would have to get by without so much asset forfeiture $. On second thought, that is no loss. And, of course, drug kingpins wouldn't be able to make nearly the size of campaign donations they do today...

Like this comment
Posted by why hate
a resident of another community
on Apr 4, 2014 at 3:27 am

You can blame the people but I think its the parents and how they raise there kids. If you care enough about them you will teach them from right to wrong. I know many families who have kids yet they dont have the time to raise them yet they have more kids. Try maybe giving the parents fines and see where that goes I bet the parents would do more and really have no choice but to be a parent and be involved. Parents have it easy when the kids dont really know whats going on because they was raised by there friends and the ways of the streets.

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