LOS ANGELES (CBS) — More than 69 parolees in Los Angeles County with known gang ties were arrested Wednesday during a parole sweep.
About 400 law enforcement officers from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) including the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s and the Los Angeles Police Department participated in the early morning sweep.
The parole sweep called “Operation Guardian” is considered one of the largest and most comprehensive sweeps in recent years because it focused on parolees who have known ties to criminal gangs, according to Luis Patino of the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
Patino said 60 out of 340 compliance checks are still being evaluated.
Law enforcement officers managed to seize 59 guns, 35 knives including four swords and a machete. Agents also confiscated 20 fully grown marijuana plants, 30 grams of cocaine, 156 grams of marijuana and hundreds of dollars of suspected illegal drug money.
One parolee was found naked in a bed with three children and that incident is now under investigation.
“This joint operation demonstrates to the citizens of Los Angeles County our commitment to making the streets of our neighborhoods a safer place to live,” Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca said in a statement.
“The people who were targeted today were put on notice that their criminal activities are not going to be tolerated,” he said.
Officers from Department of Children and Family Services, the Office of Correctional Safety, Department of Children and Family Services, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the U.S Marshals Service also participated in the parole sweep.
In an effort to curb gang activity, law enforcement officials created its Operation Guardian Parental Empowerment Guide to help parents with problems that contribute to gang involvement and posted that information on its website.
“The true frontline against gang violence is the parents at home,” Robert Ambroselli, director of the Department of Adult Parole Operations said.
Ambroselli says website can offer “hope with parenting tips and by drawing attention to local resources that can help teens who are beginning to get involved in gang activity.”
Tips for parents can be found online at the California Department of Corrections Website at: http://www.cdcr.ca.gov/OperationGuardian