Hundreds of police officers and federal law enforcement agents launched a major assault on the Avenues gang this morning, hoping to deal a blow to an elusive group they say is responsible for some of Los Angeles' most notorious street crime.
Under the cover of darkness around 3 a.m., roughly 1,200 heavily armed officers from the Los Angeles Police Department, the Drug Enforcement Administration and several other agencies dispersed from a command post near the LAPD’s training academy in Elysian Park.
Warrants in hand, they descended on dozens of homes in search of 53 alleged members or associates of the Avenues gang wanted on an array of federal charges related to extensive drug dealing, unsolved murders and other crimes.
Forty-three 43 suspects already are in custody on unrelated charges. The operation was aimed to bring new charges against 88 Avenues members or associates, a significant share of a gang that is believed to have about 400 members.
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