LOS ANGELES – Federal prosecutors say three rival Los Angeles gangs united and conspired to control drug trafficking and carried out crimes that included murder and extortion.
An indictment released Thursday charges 22 alleged gang members with racketeering, drug dealing and gun possession.
The indictment says members of the Frogtown, Toonerville and Rascals gangs in northeast Los Angeles united under the name of the Arnold Gonzales Organization to divvy up drug sales and control crime.
Prosecutors say the group was named for a Mexican Mafia member serving a life sentence in state prison for murder.
The indictment says gang members would shake down drug dealers for "taxes" that would be shared by higher-ups and funneled to Gonzales in Pelican Bay State Prison.
Authorities say 15 of the defendants were arrested Thursday morning.