FBI continues search for Bay Area fugitives

November 16, 2008 1:38:09 PM PST
The FBI continued their search for two Bay Area men Sunday morning.

Rylando Matlock and Omar Williams are considered federal fugitives after evading arrests during gang-related raids in North Richmond on Friday.

Federal, state and local authorities targeted members of the Project Trojans street gang and arrested 17 people during those raids.

18 people were also arrested during a Thursday morning gang raid, including a man out on parole whom Attorney General Jerry Brown dubbed as a "shot caller."

Approximately 200 agents served more than 40 search and arrest warrants Thursday across Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin and Sacramento counties as part of a 10-month gang enforcement initiative called "Operation Trident."

Authorities said the crackdown involved the Deep-C or "Deep Central" gang, responsible last year for more than half of Richmond's 47 homicides -- the highest per-capita murder rate in California. The violence was mostly related to drug trafficking, robbery and prostitution.

The investigation began after two gang leaders attempted to kill a rival gang member in a drive-by shooting at a Richmond mall. They instead shot the rival's 17-year-old girlfriend in the neck, leaving her a quadriplegic.

"This was a tremendous effort involving several agencies to take down the viciousness and power of this gang," Brown said Thursday. "These guys had been creating havoc and terrorizing this community for the past five years and it had to stop."

Agents also seized cocaine and marijuana worth an estimated $100,000, guns and more than $17,000 in cash. The arrested include Vegas Shackelford, a felon on parole who Brown said is a "shot caller." Shackelford allegedly led the Nickel Block, a subset of the Deep C. He faces several cocaine-related and conspiracy charges.

Also arrested was Kaisha Hill, a gang associate who is a juvenile group counselor for the Richmond Parks. Authorities said she had cocaine and three guns, one of which was a Mac-11 automatic.


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