Criminal street gangs—mostly comprised of illegal immigrants—are responsible for the majority of violent crimes in the United States and are the primary distributors of most illicit drugs.
The alarming, but not surprising, information is revealed in a new report published by the Justice Department’s National Gang Intelligence Center (NGIC), an FBI task force created in 2005 to curb the growing threat of violent gangs in the U.S. The NGIC teams up with state and local law enforcement agencies throughout the nation to enforce, study and intercept gangs and has published several reports documenting their activities.
Before the agency’s publication was made public a national newspaper revealed some of its findings. It says that up to 80% of crime in the U.S. is committed by gangs and that gang membership in this country has grown to 1 million, an increase of 200,000 in the last few years.
Additionally, gangs are the “primary retail-level distributors of most illicit drugs” in the U.S. and several are sophisticated enough to compete with major Mexican drug-trafficking cartels. Most of the country’s state and local enforcement agencies have reported gang activity in their jurisdiction and the problem will only get worse, according to the FBI.