NEWS RELEASE   6/18/2010

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Charges include firearms offenses, drug trafficking and witness tampering

Flint, Michigan – June 17, 2010 – Mayor Dayne Walling joined United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade for the announcement on the arrest of 27 individuals from Flint. Charges against these individuals include firearm offenses, drug trafficking and witness tampering. The arrests are the result of a three month long multi-agency law enforcement initiative known as the “Flint Initiative for Violent Crime Enforcement Operations” (FIVE-O). FIVE-O is comprised of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.

Today’s criminal round-up is part of a violent crime initiative aimed at stopping the violence occurring in the Flint area. 90 law enforcement officials representing several agencies were involved in the operation including the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF); Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI); Flint Police Department; Flint Area Narcotics Group (FANG);Genesee County Sheriffs Department; U.S. Marshal Service;
and Michigan State Police. The U.S. District Attorney Commended the teamwork of these law enforcement agencies in helping reduce violent crime in Flint.

“This interagency operation has been our most extensive and most successful law enforcement effort to date targeting those individuals who pose a threat to the safety of the community and the quality of life in the City of Flint,” said U.S. Attorney Barbara L. McQuade.

Mayor Walling said residents should feel confident that we are ready to respond to the criminal element of this community with tough enforcement. “This group of law enforcement officials is the toughest crime fighting team in the country. Residents of the City of Flint can feel safer today because some of the most dangerous criminals and their weapons are off the streets of our community,” said Mayor Walling.

Today’s arrests are part of the Department of Justice Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) ”Three Cities Initiative” announced in 2007. The program was awarded $1 million in federal grant funds over a three year period to combat gun and gang violence in Flint, Saginaw and Jackson.

As part of the PSN initiative, over 150 cases involving Flint residents have been accepted for federal prosecution. To date, 95 defendants have been charged (48 from 2007-2009 and 46 this year) with various gun and drug related offenses. Sentences for these defendants have ranged from twelve months to 215 months.

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