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Mexican Mafia gang broken, as California police arrest 129

- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Police in California say they've pretty much busted up one Orange County gang's operations, with the Tuesday arrest and indictment of nearly 130 alleged members of the violent Mexican Mafia.

The suspects were indicted on a range of charges, from racketeering to narcotics to weapons violations, the Daily Mail reported. The arrests were aimed at disbanding the gang's Orange County wing and upset its statewide control of the drug trade.

The arrests came after hundreds of police officers swarmed across Southern California on Tuesday, and as the tail-end of a two-year investigation, "Operation Smokin' Aces." In total, 129 have been indicted by both county and federal grand juries.

The Mexican Mafia oversees most of organized crime operations in Los Angeles, San Diego and regions of Arizona. It touts more than 1,000 members, the Daily Mail said.

"Federal and local law enforcement here in Orange County joined forces to surgically target the leaders and operatives of the Mexican Mafia and sever their influence over street gangs responsible for far too much menace and mayhem in our neighborhoods," said Andre Birotte Jr., U.S. attorney in Los Angeles.

Among those arrested: "Lil Bogart," "Creeper," "Big Shotgun" and "Bugsy," authorities said.

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