Thursday, July 14, 2011
Joint Task Force Target’s Notorious and Violent Gang NR11314krLos Angeles: The “Chosen Few Motorcycle Club” (MC) is a criminal gang that was formed in 1960 in the City of Los Angeles. Its headquarters remain in the 10800 block of South Broadway. Its members are primarily Black men, with active chapters throughout the United States. During the first four months of 2010, the club was involved in three shootings and a homicide.
In May 2010, a multi-agency taskforce involving members of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), California Department of Justice and the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office was formed. Its primary purpose was to reduce the criminal activities of the Chosen Few MC.
The results are in, and it’s clear that the criminal activity of this notoriously violent gang has been significantly curtailed. Many of its leaders and members have been arrested and incarcerated.
“Our message is consistent to each gang we encounter; we will not tolerate criminal activities here in Los Angeles. We will use every legal tool at our disposal to shut down any and all criminal enterprise,” said LAPD Deputy Chief Patrick Gannon. “Let other motorcycle gangs operating in the City of Los Angeles take note, we will shut you down and keep you down. Crime is not welcome here.”
In June 2010, the taskforce launched an elaborate operation using confidential informants to purchase firearms and narcotics from Chosen Few MC members and associates. Working with local and out-of-state members of the taskforce, one MC member was arrested for narcotics trafficking, with over one kilogram of powder cocaine seized.
“This investigation is the result of LAPD and ATF working collectively to target a violent motorcycle gang whose repeated involvement in illegal gun trafficking and controlled narcotics sales threatened the safety of Los Angeles residents,” said John A. Torres, Special Agent in Charge for the ATF Los Angeles Field Division. “The core mission of ATF is to eradicate violent crime by working with our law enforcement partners to investigate and prosecute those who criminally use firearms and the gangs that promote violence and menace in our communities.”
In one case, a DMV employee was found to be accessing DMV computer systems to create fraudulent identities that were used by club members to purchase firearms. Another investigation took down an influential member of the Chosen Few MC after he was arrested with a gallon of Phencyclidine, commonly known as PCP. Working closely with the DEA, an additional six gallons of PCP were seized in Detroit, MI, and linked to the gang.
DMV Director George Valverde said in a statement regarding the joint task force; “Our Department is very proud of our Investigations Unit and the crimes that were revealed while working with this multi-agency task force. We will continue to emphasize our internal efforts to reduce crime, especially when it comes to illegal activities committed by our own employees.”
Seizures by the LAPD and ATF throughout this investigation netted a gallon of PCP, 77 gross grams of powder cocaine, 51 gross grams of crack cocaine, 121 gross grams of marijuana and ten firearms. Additional seizures from several associates of the Los Angeles based Chosen Few MC include six gallons of PCP and 500 gross grams of powder cocaine. These cases are being prosecuted in Michigan and Virginia.
The City Attorney’s Office is actively seeking charges against 9 members of this motorcycle club. Charges include narcotics violations, including sales of cocaine and marijuana, firearms and assault weapons violations and gang enhancements. Additionally, they have filed an abatement lawsuit, to remove the property used by the gang for their criminal activities.
"The nuisance abatement lawsuit filed by my office works in concert with today’s LAPD and the ATF actions in order to put a stop to the criminal and nuisance activity at this property," said City Attorney Carmen Trutanich. "Together, we will remove the bad actors from this community and deny this criminal organization a base for its illegal activity."