Wednesday, January 13, 2010

FBI Director Honors CDCR Parole Agents for Southland Gang Operation

A wide net was cast last October when Division of Adult Parole Operations (DAPO) Region III agents joined more than 1,000 Los Angeles Police Department officers and Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Violent Crime Task Force members in a coordinated operation to take into custody violent street gang members who were involved in ongoing criminal activity.

The DAPO supervisors and agents were honored at a special ceremony in Los Angeles on January 8 by the FBI, where they received Letters of Recognition from FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III.

The CDCR agents were recognized by FBI Director Mueller “for outstanding assistance to the FBI in connection with its investigative efforts. Your cooperation was of immeasurable help to our representatives.”

Mueller shared his gratitude for DAPO’s support in his recognition, by saying that DAPO could “take pride in the role played in the success achieved. My associates and I congratulate you on a job well done.”

On Oct. 22, 2009, 12 DAPO unit supervisors and agents led by (Los Angeles) Mid-City District Administrator Joe Martinez partnered with LAPD and FBI SWAT/Tactical teams to serve about 70 arrest warrants to active parolees or felony probationers. In addition to substantial quantities of narcotics, task force members seized handguns, rifles, and a large quantity of money during the investigation.

“Operation 40 Ounces to Freedom” targeted The Rollin 40’s Crips,” a street gang charged in 23 federal indictments and 45 state warrants for their alleged roles in a narcotics trafficking conspiracy that operated in a three-square-mile area of Los Angeles. Seventy-four members of the gang were charged with conspiracy, possession with the intent to distribute crack cocaine and methamphetamine, and firearms violations. Forty-five additional members were named in state charges for their roles in the illegal drug distribution operation.

The investigation began in 2008 to address gang-related and persistent violence fueled by narcotics trafficking. As a result of the investigation, a number of parolees assigned to the Los Angeles Mid-Town 2 Unit and Huntington Park 1 Unit were identified.

Roger Kemp, Parole Agent I, played a significant role in this effort to identify and make contact with these parolees in the Mid-Town 2 Unit and was singled out for praise by Los Angeles Police Department Chief Charlie Beck in a letter to Parole Administrator Joe Martinez. Five of the seven originally targeted parolees were taken into custody, primarily for Sale of Controlled Substances. Additionally, prior to these charges, the investigation resulted in 51 felony arrests and 35 misdemeanor arrests, separate from the others arrested in this operation, including other members of the Rollin’ 40’s Crips gangs and members of other gangs.

Below is a list of all CDCR agents honored by FBI Director Robert S. Mueller:
Henrik Agasyan, Parole Agent I, Northeast 1 Unit
Irene Carrasco, Parole Agent I, Northeast 1 Unit
Roger Kemp, Parole Agent I, Midtown 2 Unit (Gang GPS)
Melanie Reyes, Parole Agent I, Midtown 2 Unit
Luis Robles, Parole Agent I, Midtown 2 Unit
Francisco Saldana, Parole Agent I, Midtown 2 Unit
Mike Williams, Parole Agent I, Huntington Park 1 Unit (Gang GPS)
Dan Ramirez, Parole Agent II, Region III GPS Coordinator
Steven Reinhart, Parole Agent II, Region III GPS Coordinator
Gabriel Rogers, Parole Agent II, Region III GPS Coordinator
John Bernal, Unit Supervisor, Midtown 2 Unit
Manya Washington, Unit Supervisor, Northeast 1 Unit
Joe Martinez, Parole Administrator, Mid-City District