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US: Police nab burglars targeting Indian families for gold

Los Angeles: Five members of a "dangerous" street gang who allegedly targeted Indian families across US states of California and Nevada to steal gold and other valuables from them have been arrested.

The gang members in Long Beach, a city in Los Angeles county in southern California, have been burglarising Indian families, often stealing gold, cash and other valuables since February 2013, CBS news reported.

Police say the ring of thieves averaged two burglaries per week and netted approximately USD 2 million over the past year. Juan Guerrero, 22; Ivan Ramirez, 22; Albaro Miranda, 24; Salvador Ramirez, 24; and Teresa Ramirez, 57 have been arrested, authorities said adding 4 others are still at large.

"They are known for murders, take-over robberies, extortions, drive-by shootings," said Detective Abel Morales of the Long Beach Police Department. "They are just dangerous people." "They were using the Internet to identify people of Indian descent and locate their houses," Ventura County Assistant Sheriff Gary Pentis was quoted as saying in the report.

The alleged robbers preyed on Indian families because it has been their culture to pass on jewellery, gold through generations and were often kept at home, Pentis said.

"These people did surveillance on the victims. They drove nice cars that fit into the communities that they were surveying and they dressed appropriately for the culture of the area they were in," he said.

The suspects were sophisticated criminals, leaving no fingerprints or DNA at the homes they burglarised, the report said. Pentis said they found the suspects the same way the alleged thieves found their victims through Facebook. "A lot of these are Facebook, MySpace, Instagram, where they are bragging, showing gold and cash from their robberies, with their face."

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