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74 Armenian Power Players Nabbed in Fed's "Outage" Bust

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74 members and associates of the Armenian Power organized crime group were taken in this morning as part of "Operation Power Outage,"--an ongoing effort by the Eurasian Organized Crime Task Force to take down the gang.

Most of those arrested in Los Angeles today are named in two federal indictments that charge a total of 88 defendants linked to Armenian Power, which is commonly called AP, explains the Department of Justice. Federal and state crimes like kidnapping, extortion, bank fraud, and narcotics trafficking have had law enforcement officials at multiple levels working together to fight the "Power."

Among the federal racketeering charges against AP members include a substantial credit and debit card "skimming" operation that targeted customers of SoCal 99 Cents Only Stores, bilking them out of over $2 million.

Steven Martinez, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI in Los Angeles, says today's arrests will help quell the threat against Angelenos who could become the AP's unwitting victims: "While some organized crime groups have been largely suppressed, others, including AP, have managed to grow from a street gang into an international organized crime group, carrying out criminal activity that runs the gamut from bank fraud schemes to extortion to kidnapping, and capable of making every citizen of the community a potential victim."