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DA: Central Harlem Gang Kept Guns In Storm Drains, Mailboxes

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Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr. (file/credit: STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images)

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr. (file/credit: STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – Officials say 19 suspects face charges ranging from conspiracy to attempted murder after authorities dismantled a central Harlem gang.

LISTEN: 1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa reports

The Manhattan district attorney and police said Friday they took down the gang responsible for shootings and other violence around 129th Street and Lenox Avenue.

DA Cyrus Vance Jr. called the neighborhood one of the most dangerous in Harlem.

“Guns were routinely stashed in mailboxes, under stoops, in storm drains and on rooftops,” Vance said.

Vance said gang members used the guns to fight turf battles with rivals in central Harlem.

For the past four years, he said this gang imported, sold and used weapons including semi-automatic pistols, revolvers, assault weapons, a TEC-9 machine pistol and a Chinese SKS military semi-automatic rifle.

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Irene Cornell reports

Vance noted that there have been 162 shootings in Manhattan so far this year, 22 of them fatal and that the weapons and ammunition sold by this gang were used in some of them.

All 19 are charged with felony conspiracy. Two 17-year-olds are also charged with attempted murder.

Arraignments were expected later Friday.

The last violent gang to be convicted by the Manhattan DA’s office was the 137th Street crew which was dealing drugs in the shadow of the Abyssinian Baptist Church.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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