Nearly 40 suspected gang members from the Bay Area and Northern California were arrested last month as part of a nationwide sweep by the Department of Homeland Security, the agency announced Thursday.
The operation, which concluded April 13, netted 600 suspects across the U.S. and targeted the Sureño criminal gang, one of the most rapidly growing gangs in the country, said Joseph Vincent, assistant special agent in charge with the Department of Homeland Security.
Bay Area suspects arrested in the sweep were from Hayward, Concord, Fremont, San Mateo, Daly City and San Francisco. They have been indicted on federal racketeering charges, including armed robbery, weapons and drug violations, murder and attempted murder, Vincent said.
Two of the Bay Area suspects are a mother and her 21-year-old son, who are accused of supplying large quantities of high-quality, commercially-grown marijuana to Sureños and Latin Kings gang members, according to the agency.
Agents said they found more than 4,600 marijuana plants, 25 pounds of processed marijuana, an AR-15 rifle, a stolen Glock handgun, four diesel generators and more than $85,000 in cash after serving search warrants at multiple properties owned by the woman. Vincent would not disclose where the pair lived.
The operation, dubbed Project Southbound, made similar arrests in New York, Texas and other states around the country.
"Sureño gang members are involved in a myriad of criminal activity, including murder, extortion, narcotics trafficking, human trafficking and prostitution and other crimes with a nexus at the border," Vincent said.
The Sureños also have members in Mexico and Central America and are linked to other gangs such as the Mexican Mafia and MS-13, Vincent said.