Authorities have accused 19 reputed street gang members of brazenly running a drug ring and committing violent acts in West Palm Beach within view of a courthouse over a 15-year span.
The suspects were nabbed in an 18-month investigation that police dubbed Operation Goodfellas, which alleged members of the 4th Street Gang sold drugs in broad daylight, and committed drive-by shootings, along with various other crimes.
“This was so brazen that you could see this with the naked eye from the courthouse,” Dave Aronberg, the State Attorney General for the 15th Judicial Circuit, told reporters during a news conference announcing the gang bust.
Investigators seized dozens of firearms, cash and cars while executing search warrants in the case. In addition to West Palm Beach police, the joint probe included investigators from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; the Drug Enforcement Administration; the U.S. Marshals Service; the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office; and the Delray Beach Police Department.
The suspects, which included a 16-year-old boy, were charged with racketeering, drug trafficking, illegal weapons and attempted murder. They face a combined 3,000 years in prison, if convicted on all counts and if all the sentences were served consecutively.