Seven different law enforcement agencies collaborated in the arrests of almost 30 criminal gang members who had been accused of violent crimes in Las Vegas. The members that have been arrested will require the help of a Las Vegas criminal defense attorney to assist in their cases.
Law Enforcement Agencies Working Together
Back in March of this year, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Gang Unit, Drug Enforcement Administration, High Desert Correctional Emergency Response Team, Clark County District Attorney, United States Attorney’s Office, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Department of Homeland Security Investigations began their efforts to uncover the severe criminal gang activities impacting the Las Vegas area.
Police reported that the gang activities involved violent acts included, but not limited to homicide, battery with a deadly weapon, assault with a deadly weapon, kidnapping, robbery, attempted murder, and prohibited possession of firearms. Gang members were also involved in trafficking narcotics from California and selling them here, in the Las Vegas Valley.
Among the recovered weapons during the arrests were a shotgun and 19 handguns. Additional found was over 1.5 pounds of meth, over a pound of cocaine, over an ounce of heroin, other drugs, and a stolen vehicle.
Metro reported that “these arrests have severely impacted the entire leadership structure of the gang” and that they had made a “pretty significant dent” in the Las Vegas Valley gang activity. Authorities believe that by attacking the gang’s overall structure rather than just arresting a few prominent gang leaders, they will have prevented other members from filling in the newly created voids; this approach also puts other gangs and their members on guard.
Over 55 felony criminal charges were filed as a result of the arrests. One of the members arrested, Henry Rios, was connected to the murder of Adan Gavilanes back in May of 2017. Another of those arrested, Jeffrey Pimental, had escaped from a prison in Nevada back in January.
Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson shared, “We are a safer community today because of the efforts by all of our criminal justice partners from the federal, state, and local level.” Also to mention: police had received significant intelligence from within the High Desert State Prison, about 40 miles northwest of Las Vegas, where the gang members were heavily involved in ongoing illegal activities.
Metropolitan Police Department Captain, John Leon, shared at a news conference, “Make no mistake. We will continue to work together with our partner agencies to rid the Las Vegas Valley of gangs.”
The name of the gang from which the arrests were made was the 18th Street Gang.