Crime & Justice

Long Beach Crips gang hit with identify theft, tax fraud charges

 California Attorney General Kamala Harris delivers a keynote address during a Safer Internet Day event at Facebook headquarters on February 10, 2015 in Menlo Park, California.
California Attorney General Kamala Harris delivers a keynote address during a Safer Internet Day event at Facebook headquarters on February 10, 2015 in Menlo Park, California.
File photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

More than 22 members of a Long Beach gang were arrested for tax fraud, identify theft and other crimes, Attorney General Kamala Harris announced Monday.

The arrests stemmed from a three-year investigation into the Insane Crip gang that had initially been sparked by a crime spree. Long Beach police discovered personal information on hundreds of Californians at a gang location.

The Attorney General's office said that the stolen information was used by gang members to file fraudulent tax returns and collect refunds. The gang would then load the refund money on to prepaid debit cards, using a different stolen identity.

The members of the Insane Crip gang were collectively charged with 283 counts of criminal conspiracy, 299 counts of identity theft, 226 counts of grand theft and 58 counts of attempted theft.

“These victims had their identities stolen and face financial harm as a result of this theft," Harris said in a statement.

Harris has previously announced that she will run for an open U.S. Senate seat in 2016.