Gangs moving into white collar crime

Amarillo, Texas

by Larry Lemmons

Amarillo law enforcement officials are seeing gangs move into white collar crime.

It begins behind prison walls.  Traditional gang members are incarcerated for narcotics, extortion, gun running, or robbery.

While in prison they learn new skills.  When they return home from prison, they teach the younger gang members what they learned from the organization.

The new crimes include ID theft, forgery, and credit card fraud.

Captain Bob Crump of the Randall County Sheriff's Office says "There's a lot of money in it. And maybe the penalties are not as high. And it's just an easy way to make money."

The Amarillo Police Department uses the Organized Crime Law to identify a gang.

It's called a gang set. There must be three or more persons.

They should have common identifying signs or signals. They have an identifiable leadership, and they commit crimes on a consistent basis.

Police also want you to respond to grafitti.  They say, Read it, Report it, and Remove it.