TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – US Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez announced the indictments of 18 members and associated of a violent and drug trafficking organization known as the “Bird Gang.”
Investigators describe the gang as "extremely dangerous," primarily operating in Tampa's Tampa Park neighborhood. The individuals are charged with various federal firearms and drug offenses.
The investigation, dubbed "Operation Blue Cast," arose out of a partnership between the US Attorney’s Office, the FBI, the Tampa Police Department, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Drug Enforcement Administration.
"Today I am happy to say that our community is safer," said Eric Sporre, Special Agent in charge of the FBI Tampa field office during a Tuesday press conference.
"The operation was swift, and it was precise."
Only News Channel 8's cameras were there as the FBI raided a house on Nebraska Avenue affiliated with the gang.
Investigators say Tuesday raids netted 14 grams of crack cocaine and 100 grams of Fentanyl, described as an "exceptional" amount of the highly-potent syntheic opioid.
US Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez hopes the crackdown sends a strong message.
"We will not longer tolerate this revolving door of people coming through the system, in and out, without any kind of consequence," she said in Tuesday's press conference.
Lopez emphasized the investigation is still ongoing.
The following members or associated of the “Bird Gang” were charged:
- Allen Brown, 39, Wimauma
- Edwin Carlon, 24, Ruskin
- Jetavious Gaynor, 48, Tampa
- David Jermone Green, Jr., 36, Tampa
- Malcon Rontavis Griffin, 26, Tampa
- Marvin Grooms, 33, Tampa
- Cornelius Jones, 26, Tampa
- Tyre Derel Jones, 25, Tampa
- Lorenzo Knight, 32, Tampa
- Jerrod Lee, 38, Tampa
- Sheldon Lillie, 36, Tampa
- Ariscio Morgan, 43, Tampa
- Bernard Pendleton, 47, Tampa
- Deandre Perry, 37, Tampa
- Timmy Ramsey, 40, Brandon
- Anthony Reed, Jr., 40, Tampa
- Wandra Reynolds, 56, Tampa
- James Haskell Stephens, IV, 42, Wesley Chapel