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FBI, LAPD join forces against gangs

By Patrick McGreevy and Richard Winton, Times Staff Writers 
Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, left, talks to Joana Ponce 12, niece of Arturo Ponce, who was killed last December, during a news conference Thursday in Wilmington, Calif. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III joined local law enforcement officials Thursday as they announced a campaign for the "strategic dismantling" of two street gangs after the killing last month of 14-year-old Cheryl Green in the Harbor Gateway area.

In addition, Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca said he plans to keep convicted gang members in jail for their full sentences, exempting them from an early release program underway to relieve overcrowding.

Mueller was in Los Angeles to pledge FBI assistance in the city's battle against gangs after a 14% increase in gang violence last year, including a hike of nearly 25% in South L.A.

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