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Oldest Pasadena street gang targeted for drug trafficking

With its close proximity to Mexico, Southern California has long been notorious for drug trafficking and the illegal drug trade. Unfortunately, sometimes good people can get caught up in the bad decisions of others. This is sometimes referred to as guilt by association. While association may be enough to make the police suspicious, it is not enough to put a person behind bars. In such cases, it is vital to build a strong defense.

Federal authorities in Southern California recently announced that federal drug trafficking charges have been filed against two dozen members of a Pasadena street gang. The federal investigation targeted the street gang known as "Vario Pasadena Rifa" for distributing large quantities of methamphetamine and other drugs in the Pasadena area and around the adjacent valley. Agents referred to the investigation as Operation Rosebud.

A Los Angeles grand jury returned a federal indictment on December 3 charging the 24 defendants with a variety of federal drug offenses related to the alleged trafficking network. The federal drug task force said that it recovered more than 60 pounds of methamphetamine, powder cocaine and heroin from a number of different sources related to the gang. The street gang is one of the oldest gangs in Pasadena, California.

While the punishment for federal drug offenses is never light, the penalties do vary depending on a variety of different factors. These factors include the type and amount of the illegal substance that is involved in the incident, the geographical region or area of distribution, whether a weapon was used in the crime and whether children were targeted for the sale of drugs. Generally speaking, trafficking sentences can range anywhere from three to five years to life.

Source: KTLA, "FBI: 24 Charged in Drug Trafficking Networks in Pasadena and Antelope Valley," Kennedy Ryan, Dec. 13, 2013

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