While announcing a statewide operation against the Nuestra Familia prison gang at the end of August, Attorney General (and gubernatorial candidate) Jerry Brown advocated cellphone jamming technology in California prison facilities to prevent inmates from communicating with the outside world.
According to the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, high-ranking members of NF incarcerated in the Secure Housing Unit at Pelican Bay State Prison were smuggling messages to their underlings in less secure units. In turn, they would disseminate their orders via cellphone, written messages or word of mouth to NF sets across the state.
As Rina reported last month, CDCR’s effort to restrict the ability of prison gangs to communicate also involved further restrictions on visits, mail and access to bank accounts. While cellphone jamming would require a change in federal law, prison officials at a minimum-security facility in Kern County have already banned physical contact between inmates and visits.
Regardless of the restrictions imposed on inmates, CDCR might want to take a closer look at its own staff. According to a January report by the National Gang Intelligence Center on gang infiltration of law enforcement, CDCR has a significant problem with gangs holding sway over certain prison guards, who smuggle in goods, give incarcerated gang members unwarranted privileges and conceal their activities. Continue reading
Florida Department of Corrections
State and federal law enforcement agents yesterday released the names and charges of the alleged Nuestra Familia members who were arrested during Tuesday’s statewide gang sweep. Eight more people have since been arrested, bringing the number of suspects in custody to 46, with two unnamed people still at large.
A full list of the suspects arrested as of yesterday is posted below.
A few interesting subplots have emerged from the media’s take on “Operation Street Sweeper.” Large amounts of cash, 12 weapons, and large amounts of cocaine, methamphetamine were found during the arrests. Local station ABC 7‘s headline claimed the Operation had “busted up” Nuestra Familia.
Attorney General Jerry Brown discusses Operation Street Sweeper
A few hours ago, California Attorney General (and gubernatorial candidate) Jerry Brown announced a multi-county gang sweep aimed at Nuestra Familia, a powerful prison-based gang that controls illegal activity in state correctional facilities and, through the Norteno street gang, communities throughout Northern California.
Operation Street Sweeper is part of an ongoing crackdown on the two intertwined groups Both Nuestra Familia and the Nortenos were the targets of two gang sweeps earlier this year, the fruits of a collaboration between local, state and federal law enforcement that began at a 2009 gang summit in Salinas.
Thirty-six gang members, including four leaders of local sets, were arrested by more than 250 federal, state, and local law enforcement agents from the Central Coast to the Central Valley, including officers from Visalia, Salinas, and Yuba City. According to Visalia Police and the Attorney General’s Office, Nuestra Familia has orchestrated a rash of violent crime in the city against rival Sureno and Asian gangs, as well as its own uncooperative soldiers: There have been 30 gang-related violent crimes this year through August, up from 30 at the same point in 2009.