VIDEO: Nationwide DHS Sweep Nets 600 Known Gang Members
A massive nationwide crackdown on street gangs has netted hundreds of suspects. Suspected gang members were rounded up by the hundreds in a massive federal crackdown called "Project Southbound," targeting one of the largest international criminal street gangs, the Surenos, or Sur 13.
"'Surenos' is Spanish for 'southerners' -- but it's the street gangs that affiliate with the prison gang the Mexican Mafia," ICE Special Agent in Charge Claude Arnold told KABC TV.
More than 750 people in total were arrested during the month-long sweep dubbed Project Southbound. More than 600 of them are known gang members.
Authorities say more than half of the gang members arrested had violent criminal histories. Seven of them were wanted for murder, and five others were wanted for rape and sexual assault.
According to a 2011 Justice Department report, Sur 13 gangs are expanding faster than any other national gang. Its members are responsible for crimes ranging from murder to weapons- and drug-trafficking.