Marshals Arrest 44 in "Operation CRACK DOWN"

Operation CRACK DOWN, which took place from April 24th through April
26th, was a fugitive apprehension effort led by the U.S. Marshals Service in Nevada in collaboration with the Washoe County Sheriff's
Office, Reno Police Department, Sparks Police Department, Nevada Department of Justice (Attorney General's Office), Nevada Department of Public Safety Division of Parole and Probation, U.S. Drug Enforcement
Administration, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Detention and Enforcement Removal Office, the United States Secret Service, Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and the United States Secret Service. Over the course of three days, Nevada law enforcement partners arrested 44 fugitives, seized 272.76 grams of marijuana and $3,174 dollars.

Operation CRACK DOWN targeted fugitives with outstanding felony warrants with an emphasis on violent crime. The majority of those targeted were wanted by state and local agencies based in Washoe County. U.S. Marshal Gary Orton reported, "It is a small percentage of individuals that commit the majority of crimes. The targeting of fugitives is an effective effort at targeting the worst of the worst who are most likely continuing their criminal activity. Apprehending a fugitive wanted for a felony offense and placing him or her in jail increase public safety.
Operation Crack Down was a success due to the collaborative effort with local, state and federal law enforcement partners."

Fugitive Jose Maria Meddez Pleitez, 52 years of age, was wanted for
murder in Guatemala. Supported by immigration authorities Meddez was
detained on immigrations violations. The Government of Guatemala had
issued a warrant for Meddez's arrest for the 2004 murder of Marvin
Leonel Norguera Sandorval. The victim's pregnant wife was in the room
with her husband when Sandorval was murdered by Meddez. Guatemalan authorities requested assistance from the U.S. Marshals Service in locating and apprehending Meddez. USMS and ICE Agents located and arrested him in Reno, Nevada, as part of Operation Crackdown on April 25, 2007. Meddez is pending removal to Guatemala based on his immigration status.

Operation CRACK DOWN coincided with the beginning of the U.S. Deparment of Justice's "National Crime Victims' Rights Week (www.ovc.gov/ncvrw)," the theme of which is "Justice isn't served until crime victims are." Chief Deputy U.S. Marshal Fidencio Rivera stated, "Victims of crime deserve law enforcement's commitment to bringing these fugitives to justice and Nevada law enforcement is committed. There can not be closure until the perpetrator has been arrested, prosecuted and adjudicated. This effort will allow 44 victims to begin the closure process." Supervisory Deputy U.S. Marshal Brad Albro who oversees the Marshals' northern Nevada operations stated, "Operation Crack Down was a success. 44 fugitives were apprehended and no one was hurt. It was a good week."

"Operation CRACK DOWN" was a three day intensive and focused law
enforcement operation with over fifty law enforcement officers
participating. These efforts can not be maintained on a daily basis but
with the excellent teamwork between Nevada law enforcement partners, the U.S. Marshals Service is committed to future joint endeavors.


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