General Crime

* Operation Garlic Press Arrests Over 100 in Undercover Operation

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Attorney General Kamala Harris today announced that federal, state, and local law enforcement officials recently arrested more than 100 people across five counties as part of an undercover operation. Over the last three days, law enforcement officers arrested 104
people for crimes that included the sale of drugs, firearms, and stolen property and vehicles in Alameda, Santa Clara, San Benito, Monterey and Santa Cruz counties.

Most are gang members with prior felony convictions, according to Harris’ office.”After noticing an increase in crime, Gilroy officials asked for help in dismantling a gang network that had set up shop in their town,” Harris told reporters at a news conference in Gilroy this afternoon.

The arrests followed an 18-month investigation in which undercover California Department of Justice agents purchased drugs and firearms, as well  as stolen property and vehicles, from gang members and others who had prior felony convictions.

Law enforcement officers seized more than three pounds of methamphetamine, 28.5 grams of heroin, four ounces of cocaine, 34 ecstasy tablets, 10 oxycontin pills, 44 firearms, 81 stolen vehicles, and stolen property. The state charges against the suspects include auto theft, possession of stolen property, gun charges, burglary, sales of narcotics, and gang enhancements.

Some suspects will also face federal indictments. Roughly 150 law enforcement personnel from local, state and federal agencies were involved in the operation. The lead investigative agencies included the California Department of Justice and the Unified Narcotic Enforcement Team. Assisting agencies were the Gilroy Police Department, California Highway Patrol, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office – Northern District.

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