Orange County gang unit makes a dozen arrests, seizes drugs, cash

Jessica De Nova Image
Friday, November 8, 2019
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An FBI gang task force arrested a dozen suspects associated with one of Orange County's most dangerous gangs Thursday on guns and drugs charges.

SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) -- The FBI's Orange County violent gang task force arrested a dozen suspects associated with one of Santa Ana's most dangerous gangs Thursday for a variety of allegations related to violence and drugs, according to officials.

Authorities say 12 people were arrested Thursday morning in "Operation Black Rhino," which uncovered guns, ammunition, money and drugs. Authorities are looking for a 13th suspect in connection to the same alleged crimes.

Evidence seized during the operation includes narcotics, $16,000 in cash and firearms.

Santa Ana Police Chief David Valentin described the Townsend Street Gang as "one of the most violent and active gangs in the city of Santa Ana."

Some of the suspects were also arrested for violent crimes, including murder and attempted murder. Some also had prior felony arrests for murder.

Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer said his office runs the Gang Reduction Intervention Program at nearby Monte Vista elementary school to try to keep kids out of gangs like these.

"It's a really important program to try to educate and keep these kids who are growing up in this gang-infested community from joining gangs themselves as they become teenagers," Spitzer said.

An investigation is ongoing.