The Trump administration just finished a six-week sweep of suspected gang members with the final number arrested being 1,378. This is the largest gang sweep by ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations yet.
The operation ran from March 26 to May 6 with some of the major targets being: gang members and those involved with “transnational criminal activity, including drug trafficking, weapons smuggling, human smuggling, sex trafficking, murder and racketeering.”
“Gangs threaten the safety of our communities, not just in major metropolitan areas, but in our suburbs and rural areas, too,” ICE Acting Director Thomas Homan said Thursday. “Gang-related violence and criminal activity present an ongoing challenge for law enforcement everywhere.”
According to ICE, of the 1,378 total arrested, 933 were U.S. citizens, and 1,095 were confirmed as gang members or affiliates. Also, 104 of those arrested were affiliated with the dreaded MS-13 gang, eight of whom illegally crossed the border as unaccompanied minors.
“Our efforts to dismantle gangs are much more effective in areas where partnership with local law enforcement is strongest,” Homan said.
During the operation, HSI partnered with other law enforcement agencies to seize more than 200 firearms, narcotics like cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin, fentanyl and marijuana and $491,763 in U.S. currency.
Enforcement actions occurred across the nation, but the greatest activity took place in the Houston, New York City, Atlanta and Newark, N.J., areas.