February 12, 2009
FBI Issues National Gang Threat Assessment
According to the 2009 National Gang Threat Assessment released by the National Gang Intelligence Center (NGIC) and the National Drug Intelligence Center (NDIC), approximately one million gang members belonging to more than 20,000 gangs were criminally active in the U.S. as of September 2008. The assessment was developed through analysis of available federal, state, and local law enforcement information; 2008 NDIC National Drug Threat Survey (NDTS) data; and verified open source information.
“Gangs have long posed a threat to public safety, but as this study shows, gang activity is no longer merely a problem for urban areas. Gang members are increasingly moving to suburban America, bringing with them the potential for increased crime and violence,” said Assistant Director Kenneth W. Kaiser, FBI Criminal Investigative Division.
Other key findings are as follows:
* Local street gangs, or neighborhood-based street gangs, remain a significant threat because they still constitute the largest number of gangs nationwide. Most engage in violence in conjunction with a variety of crimes, including retail-level drug distribution.
The following agencies contributed to the report: the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance; Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics; Department of Justice, Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force; Drug Enforcement Administration; Federal Bureau of Investigation; Federal Bureau of Prisons; National Drug Intelligence Center; National Gang Intelligence Center; Office of National Drug Control Policy, High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas; United States Army Criminal Investigations Division; United States Customs and Border Protection; United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement; United States Marshals Service; numerous sate and local law enforcement agencies; and the Canada Border Service Agency.
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