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South City Officials Honor Feds For Gang Raid

Local officials attended a ceremony in Southern California to honor federal agents who helped arrest Victor Flores, who has been tied to Norteño gang activity, including the 2010 triple murder in South San Francisco.

Mayor Richard Garbarino, Police Chief Mike Massoni and City Manager Barry Nagel attended a ceremony last week to honor federal agents who helped arrest the individual now indicted for the triple homicide in South City in 2010.

The event took place at the former El Toro Marine Corps Air Station in Orange County.

"It was nice for us, the leaders of the city, to express our gratitute for what these individuals did to help us irradicate a significant problem," Chief Massoni told Patch.

Several Homeland Security and Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials were at the event.

"They were so impressed that city officials would take the time to come and say 'thank you for a job well done,''" Garbarino said at last week's city council meeting.

At the ceremony were the three Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) agents who were shot during the ; according to Garbarino, one attended in a wheel chair due to his injuries.

The Petaluma raid included the arrest of Victor Flores, an alleged Norteño gang member, who is the suspected perpetrator of the triple homicide. 

The raid was dubbed Operation Red Tidings and involved agents from HSI and the ICE. Their aim was to arrest 13 individuals tied to gang activity and named in an April indictment of 19 gang members. Six of the indicted were already in police custody.

May 3 was "a welcome day for residents of South San Francisco and a very bad day for an entrenched gang based in the Bay Area," Clark Settles, special agent in charge for HSI San Francisco, said in an ICE press release. "This indictment and the related arrests serve as a warning to local gangs about the consequences of using violence and fear to maintain control of their turf."

Flores, or "Little Creeper, 20, has been indicted for three counts of attempted murder of federal agents, in addition to charges for his involvement in the 2010 homicides. , he has been in federal custody. 

The South San Francisco Police Department assisted in the raid and continues to collaborate with FBI and HSI with the investigations.

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