UK & World News

  • 13 December 2012, 13:32

'Bad Barbies' Gang Busted By New York Cops

A violent street gang, whose female factions go by names like "Bad Barbies" and "One Seven Hoes", has been dismantled by cops in New York City.

About 40 members of the Bronx-based Trinitarios gang were charged on Wednesday with multiple offences, ranging from murder and assault to racketeering and selling drugs.

Detectives are investigating a whopping nine murders and 24 attempted murders of mostly rival gang members in the Bronx and nearby Yonkers.

New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said at its height the Trinitarios gang had up to 100 female members.

"We weren't surprised to learn that the Trinitarios were up to no good in the Bronx," Commissioner Kelly said, according to the New York Daily News.

"But the Bad Barbies? Who knew? Maybe it's a sign of the times that gender is no bar when it comes to murder, robbery and other crimes."

Alleged leader Maria Mejia was charged with murder in connection with the stabbing of a Crips gang member at a McDonald's in 2005.

The 24-year-old was also charged over the shooting of a robbery victim outside a Mexican restaurant in the same year.

An investigation of the Trinitarios gang has resulted in the arrests of 119 people in the Bronx and Manhattan since 2009.

US Attorney Preet Brahara said they would turn the streets into a "shooting gallery" if anyone infringed on their drug dealing or gun running.

"No one here wants to allow even one small step backward to the gang wars of the 1990s, and no one here wants our city to end up like some others that have recently seen startling spikes in violence because gangs have gone unchecked," she warned.

The authorities said the gang crackdown was working, with Bronx shootings down by 6% on last year and murders down by 23%.