In recent years, authorities have arrested more than 200 gang members in an unexpected place: the tree-lined suburbs along the Hudson River in New York state, reports NPR. Drug traffickers with ties to the Bloods, the Latin Kings, and other gangs have put down roots there. Authorities say they brought shootings and stabbings with them.
In Middletown, N.Y., 90 minutes northwest of New York City, last month, a law enforcement task force used helicopters and SWAT teams to find more than two dozen suspected members of the Bloods street gang, accused of racketeering, conspiracy, and drug charges that could send them to prison for a decade. An indictment says the group operated like a criminal machine, pushing cocaine, marijuana, and heroin from the Bronx into New York’s northern suburbs. For three months, authorities tracked them using wiretaps and cameras on telephone poles and trees. Preet Bharara, U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, is best known for prosecuting Wall Street executives. He says preventing gang bloodshed is his top priority.