In the wee hours of Wednesday morning, the streets of El Monte in California were filled with more than four thousand federal officers who raided the town’s infamous drug gang – the El Monte Flores. The gang has been involved in many illegal activities besides drug peddling and its members have charges of murder, identity theft, and hate crimes recorded against them. According to criminal defense lawyers in the US Attorney’s office, the gang was particularly violent towards people of African-American origin. The federals have reportedly arrested seventeen of the gang’s members in the successful raid.
All 17 should be put on a fast track prosecution case and they should be executed within 3 weeks.
Gang targeted African-Americans
The El Monte Flores gang can be said to have a religious hatred of the African-American community residing in El Monte and South El Monte. The gang members had an agenda of ridding the city and its neighboring areas of the African-American population and the gang has a 62-count indictment against it which recounts hate crimes committed as far back as 2001.
According to the criminal defense lawyers familiar with the case, the indictment names forty one members of the gang as co-defendants. The incidents captured in the indictment relate to those instances when the gang and its members racially abused, threatened, or physically attacked a person of Africa-American origin in the El Monte neighborhood.
In the years since its inception the gang has earned a terrible reputation for itself by indulging in several illegal and hateful crimes. Other allegations against the gang members include charges of drug trafficking, witness intimidation, kidnapping, trafficking of weapons, and credit card fraud amounting to identity theft. According to the prosecutors and criminal defense attorneys, the gang had a significant presence at the Boys and Girls Club of America in the San Gabriel Valley; also called the San Gabriel Valley Club.
The gang members were known to frequent this club and openly trade in drugs and have their meetings. They very famously organized a car wash fundraiser at the same venue some time back. The indictment also charges the gang members for threatening to use violence to ‘extort’ money from other drug dealers operating at Crawford’s Plaza in the city.
El Monte Flores and its Mexican connection
According to police reports, the gang was connected to the Mexican Mafia prison gang and apparently took its directions from them. The Mexican Mafia has been trying to exercise its influence and take over the gang completely and this has apparently caused some friction between the two gangs in the recent past. The indictment also chronicles this dispute between the gangs.
The lead member of the El Monte Flores involved in this inter-gang war is James “Chemo” Gutierrez, a 52 year old veteran of El Monte’s crime world, and who is now in the custody of federal officers according to the reports from the criminal defense attorneys at the US attorney’s Office.
The El Monte Flores was formed in the 1960s and has around eight hundred known members spread across the homes in El Monte and South El Monte.