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2 arrested after weapons, drugs seized in Gwinnett gang raids

Multiple firearms and pounds of suspected drugs were seized in the raids on two suspected gang caches in Lawrenceville.
Multiple firearms and pounds of suspected drugs were seized in the raids on two suspected gang caches in Lawrenceville.

Credit: The Georgia Bureau of Investigation

Credit: The Georgia Bureau of Investigation

State and federal agents on Tuesday seized an “arsenal of firearms” and pounds of suspected drugs in raids on two gang caches in Lawrenceville, authorities said.

The raids by the GBI gang force and multiple other law enforcement agencies were the result of a six-month investigation into the activities of two longtime Lawrenceville residents. As a result, authorities arrested Jorge Omar Rosales, 31, and Damion Ray Martinez, 27, on gang and drug charges.

The two are known members of the Sureños gang, according to GBI spokeswoman Nelly Miles. Sureños, or Sur 13, are groups of loosely affiliated gangs that pay tribute to the Mexican Mafia prison gang.

Rosales and Martinez align themselves with different subsets of the international gang, Miles said.

“Agents executed two search warrants in Gwinnett County and seized an arsenal of firearms including a .223 rifle, handguns, an Uzi pistol, a sawed-off shotgun, and 100-round drum magazine,” she said in a news release. “Agents also seized approximately 10 pounds of suspected methamphetamine, two pounds of suspected marijuana, suspected cocaine and gang paraphernalia.”

In an interview last month with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, new Gwinnett police Chief Tom Doran acknowledged that the county has seen the same uptick in gang activity that many other Georgia communities have in recent years.

“We’re no different, we recognize it, we see it,” Doran said. “It is a problem and something we prioritize very high.”

The interview came shortly after Gwinnett police announced the arrests of 17 suspected members of the 59 Brim Bloods street gang, the culmination of a nearly yearlong investigation. Charges filed in that case ranged from drug trafficking to illegal gun sales; officials said the gang was also engaged in pimping, prostitution, robberies and assaults.

Investigators had identified 50 additional persons of interest in that case.

“We feel that's going to have a major impact here in Gwinnett,” Doran said at the time.

In the most recent busts, Rosales faces one count of violating the state’s gang act, 10 counts of possessing a firearm as a felon, one count of trafficking meth and one count of possessing cocaine.

Martinez faces one count of violating the state’s gang act, seven counts of possessing a firearm as a felon and one count of trafficking meth. Both men are also charged with violating their parole.

They are being held in the Gwinnett County jail without bond.

“This is an ongoing investigation and more arrests are expected,” Miles said.

— Staff writer Tyler Estep contributed to this article.

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