Eight alleged members of the Huntington Station chapter of the Latin Kings gang were arrested Thursday on drug, assault and weapons charges, authorities announced Friday.
Angel Cordero, who was described as the leader of the group, was charged under federal racketeering laws. Six other suspects and a juvenile who authorities described as “high-ranking” were also apprehended in a joint investigation led by the FBI’s Long Island Gang Task Force, which Suffolk County police joined last summer once gang violence began increasing.
Also arrested were Jose Sosa, Antonio Diaz Jr., Jeremiah Bowens, Luis Lemus, Edwin Morejon and Scal Mazra, police said.
They were reportedly held without bail after an initial court hearing.
The Latin Kings are believed to have about 50,000 members nationwide, about a fifth of them in the New York City area with a fraction of that amount on Long Island. They are behind the top two largest gangs on LI, the Bloods, a predominantly African American gang, and MS-13, a rival Latin American gang, who together make up the majority of the approximately 5,000 known gang members on LI.
The roundup comes shortly after a crackdown on gangs in the Brentwood and Central Islip areas in response to a string of violent deaths thought to be gang-related.