Nassau County officials today will call for a federal investigation into a series of antigang raids last week that resulted in the arrests of 186 immigrants on Long Island. They said that the vast majority of those arrested were not gang members and that local police were misled and endangered by the operation.
Until yesterday, officials at Immigration and Customs Enforcement who conducted the operation would not answer questions about the raids, which began last Monday and ended Sunday night, and have drawn protests from immigrant families and their advocates.
But yesterday afternoon, Peter J. Smith, a special agent in charge of the operation, said the raids, conducted by federal agents from all over the country, were a result of a two-month investigation based on a list of possible gang members supplied by state, county and local officials.
“The county gave us a list of more than 2,000 suspects from Nassau that we vetted jointly,” Mr. Smith said. “They should be happy we’re taking these people out, that we’re making their streets safer.”
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