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OXNARD : Police Arrest 1, Warn Others in Gang Sweep

Authorities conducted a surprise sweep through Oxnard on Friday, arresting one man and warning suspected gang members that illegal gang activities would result in stiff prison terms.

About 40 officers from local law enforcement agencies participated in the operation, which began at 7 a.m., Oxnard Police Sgt. Chuck Hookstra said.

The officers went to 14 households, serving warnings to six gang members and arresting Richard Mendoza, 19, on suspicion of possessing a controlled substance.

Mendoza, who was being held at Ventura County Jail in lieu of $5,000 bail, is scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday.

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The other suspected gang members were at school or work and will be served with warnings later, Hookstra said.

The warnings said gang participation in a criminal activity could lead to a three-year prison sentence under a state anti-terrorism law.

“We want to make a statement to this particular gang that we’re watching,” Hookstra said.

The gang, which he declined to identify, has about 50 members and is about 10 years old, Hookstra said.

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