INSIDE GANG VIOLENCE
Changing Threat and Our Response
Thursday, FBI Director Robert Mueller traveled
to Los Angeles to talk in specific terms about
what we're doing to help big cities and local
communities nationwide battle the growing
wave of gang violence.
few highlights from the Director's speech
at the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce.
And we encourage you to read the full
text now posted online.
Los Angeles. "Los Angeles is ground
zero for modern gang activity. Many gangs
were born here, a generation agothe
Bloods and the Crips, MS-13, and 18th Street.
And for every highly organized gang enterprise,
there are hundreds of local gangs wreaking
havoc on street corners and in neighborhoods."
the changing threat. "Modern gangs
are more diverse, more dispersed, and more
dangerous. There is no 'typical' gang. Some
are comprised of just three or four individuals
whose sole ambition is to control drug sales
on their corner. Others have high tech hierarchies
and maintain their own websites. One gang
may be robbing a bank for extra spending
money, while five blocks down, another gang
may be committing murder for a criminal
enterprise being run out of a prison."
successful cases. Read about major takedowns
of "Nuestra Familia," Ruben Castro
and the 18th Street Gang, MS-13, the Black
P-Stone Bloods, and the Townsend Street
Gang, which led a local resident to say,
"There are many good people here. Thank
you for taking away the ones who cause trouble."
our longstanding anti-gang strategy.
"One can picture the gang problem as
a pyramid. The base is primarily made up
of the unsophisticated, loosely organized
gangs. In the middle of the pyramid are
more structured gangs. And at the top is
a relatively small number of highly sophisticated
gangs that are involved in organized criminal
activity. These are the groups the FBI has
traditionally looked for. Our strategy has
been to imprison, and thereby eliminate,
the leadership of gang enterprises."
on our emerging new formula, which leverages
our 131 Violent Gang Task Forces nationwide
and our MS-13 National Gang Task Force based
in Washington, along with our growing use
of intelligence and federal criminal statutes.
law enforcement's needs to defeat gangs.
More resources to staff up gang task forces;
better intelligence to understand the threat
and prevent gang violence; new technologies
to support investigations (see the Director's
description of an innovative new program
in Philadelphia); and new ways to leverage
federal criminal statutesfrom applying
stiffer penalties to providing more protection
the end, the Director is confident that we
can turn back the tide of gang violence. "Gang
crime may be part of our reality today, but
law enforcement can change that reality tomorrow.
We in the FBI are committed to working with
our partners in state and law enforcement
to meet this challenge."
remarks | FBI's
Violent Gangs website