Raids Cripple ‘Budding’ Mexican Mafia, Drug Cartel Joint ‘Project’

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 Twenty-two people named in two federal grand jury indictments outlining an alliance between the Mexican Mafia prison gang, a South Los Angeles street gang and a drug cartel were arrested Tuesday in a series of Southern California raids.

The crackdown is being hailed as a major blow to efforts by the La Familia Michoacana drug cartel to extend its reach into Southern California, and to protect and expand the cartel’s drug trafficking activities across the U.S.

“Today’s salvo against the Mexican Mafia is part of a 20-year fight to curb the influence of the prison gang both inside prison walls and on the streets of Southern California,” U.S. Attorney Andre Birotte Jr. said.

The first indictment names 13 defendants – eight of whom were arrested Tuesday, four who were already in custody and one who remains a fugitive, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

The seven-count indictment names six members of the Mexican Mafia, three associates of the gang, and four people directly linked to the La Familia Michoacana drug cartel, which, according to the indictment, “is responsible for the trafficking of hundreds of thousands of pounds of controlled substances, including methamphetamine, from Mexico into the United States.”

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