TAMPA, Fla.- United States Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez announced on Tuesday that 18 people have been arrested after a long-term investigation into a violent drug trafficking organization known as the "Bird Gang."
18 people have been charged with various federal firearms and drug offenses.
Those arrested included 39-year-old Allen Brown, 24-year-old Edwin Carlon, 48-year-old Jetavious Gaynor, 36-year-old David Jerome Green, Jr., 26-year-old Malcolm Rontavis Griffin, 33-year-old Marvin Grooms, 26-year-old Cornelius Jones, 25-year-old Tyre Derel Jones, 32-year-old Lorenzo Knight, 38-year-old Jerrod Lee, 36-year-old Sheldon Lillie, 43-year-old Ariscio Morgan, 47-year-old Bernard Pendleton, 37-year-old Deandre Perry, 40-year-old Timmy Ramsey, 40-year-old Anthony Reed, Jr., and 56-year-old Wandra Reynolds.
"They’ve committed crimes stemming from simple assaults to shootings to drug transactions, robberies and even several homicides," said Assistant Chief of Police Elias Vazquez of the Tampa Police Department.
The FBI, Tampa Police Department and U.S. Attorney's Office worked together to reduce violent crimes in the Bay area.
“Our city is safer today as a result of these arrests and it will continue to be safer in the future as a result of the partnership between our law enforcement agencies,’’ said Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan.
“This year-long operation sends a clear message that we and our partners will not rest until violent gangs are brought to justice," said Chief Dugan.
The individuals are now facing various federal drug charges.
"These individuals are charged with multiple federal violations including illegal possession of firearms and drug offenses that include heroin, fentanyl, oxycodone, cocaine and cracked cocaine. Infact,100 grams of fentanyl were seized in this operation," said Maria Chapa Lopez, United States Attorney, Middle District of Florida.