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A Joppa man was one the 42 people arrested and charged last week in connection with a drug ring that was operated in Baltimore by members of the Bloods street gang.

Raids were conducted throughout the Baltimore area Thursday under 50 search and seizure warrants targeting gang members and others operating a drug ring in Maryland who took orders from Bloods members in California.

Kevin Van White, 29, of Joppa, also known as “Kev,” was charged in the indictment with conspiracy to participate in racketeering activity and conspiracy to distribute and possess drugs with intent to distribute.

Van White faces a maximum sentence of life in prison on the drug trafficking charge and a maximum of 20 years in jail on the conspiracy charge.

How involved Van White was in the ring is unclear; however he did arrange two drug sales, according to the indictment filed in U.S. District Court in Baltimore.

On or about Jan. 15, 2009, in a series of recorded telephone calls, Van White and two others indicted allegedly arranged to obtain and then resell two ounces of cocaine to another individual.

Also, on or about March 13, 2009, Van White and another indicted allegedly arranged a sale of approximately 59 grams of crack cocaine to another individual.

Among the people indicted were 23 alleged members of the Pasadena Denver Lanes Bloods, a subset of the Bloods based in California. Van White is not listed as a suspected PDL member.

The Baltimore gang would pay dues, sell drugs and commit violent crimes and send profits back to PDL leaders in California, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Baltimore.

Police monitored cell phone calls in which Maryland gang members discussed sending money to California, getting drugs from the West Coast, carrying out hits on various people, committing various crimes and the activities of other gang members.

“Today’s coast-to-coast operation dismantled several gang sets whose members promoted violence to secure the sanctity of their organization in Baltimore — while being directed by Bloods leadership in California,” ATF Acting Assistant Director Mark Chait said in a press release. “If you use a gun to murder, rob or intimidate another person, in the name of loyalty to the gang, ATF and its law enforcement partners will shine the light of justice on your criminal actions.”

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