Spain says it plans to deport 34 top members of violent Latin American street gangs operating in the Spanish capital.

The Interior Ministry delegate for Madrid, Cristina Cifuentes, said the expulsions aim to prevent gangs like the Netas or the Latin Kings from getting a foothold in the city. In a statement, Cifuentes said the 34 belong to five gangs. Details of their nationalities were not available.

Spanish immigration law allows the government to annul Spanish citizenship or residency permits and deport immigrants who have committed offenses.

The gangs — made up mostly of youths from Ecuador, the Dominican Republic, Colombia and Peru — are often involved in extortion, drug trafficking and street fights. Police estimate there are 350 gang members in Madrid and say many are repeatedly arrested.

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