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Shane T. McCoy / U.S. Marshals

More Than 8,000 Violent Fugitives Arrested In Nationwide Sweep

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, the operation busted "more than 500 accused murderers, 600 gang members and nearly 1,000 sex offenders."

By Katie Link | March 23, 2016

More than 8,000 of the country’s most dangerous criminals are now behind bars thanks to a six-week sweep.

U.S. marshals targeted 12 of the most violent cities, including Baltimore, Chicago and Washington, D.C., during Operation Violence Reduction12 — dubbed Operation VR12 for short. 

Federal officials announced Wednesday they busted "more than 500 accused murderers, 600 gang members and nearly 1,000 sex offenders."

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They didn’t just nab people, though. Between Feb. 1 and March 11 they also seized more than 400 firearms, over $390,000 and more than 70 kilograms of illegal drugs. 

Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates said, "Fugitives initiated gun battles, forced barricaded standoffs, assaulted officers and did everything they could to evade arrest — but our Deputy Marshals, together with their law enforcement partners, stood firm and succeeded in capturing the bad guys."

These broad sweeps are proving pretty successful for the U.S. Justice Department. A similar coordinated effort put more than 7,000 fugitives behind bars last year.

And last October, the FBI caught 150 alleged pimps and rescued nearly that many children during a weeklong sex trafficking sting.

This video includes images from Shane T. McCoy / U.S. Marshals.  

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