14 indictments handed down in large Merced County gang investigation

Fourteen defendants were indicted on Thursday by a federal grand jury for drug trafficking and gun offenses as a result of Operation Scrapbook, a multi-agency gang investigation in Merced County earlier this month that resulted in more than 50 arrests, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.


In December 2016, federal, state and local investigators began targeting gang members associated with Sureno criminal street gang. Information leading to the arrests was gathered through undercover purchases of guns and drugs, surveillance and intercepted communications on social media, authorities have said.

On May 10, more than 500 law enforcement officers descended on communities in Merced and Stanislaus counties to serve search and arrest warrants. Many of those arrested face state charges.

The 14 facing federal charges include:

  • Robert “Bubba” Guthrie, 22, of Atwater, is charged with conspiracy;…

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