Joint NJ-Pennsylvania investigation nets 5 in illegal gun ring in Camden

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Five people have been charged in a joint investigation by New Jersey and Pennsylvania authorities into an illegal gun ring.

New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal, along with Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, announced the results of the investigation Monday in Camden. They said that this is the beginning of a partnership between the two states to get more illegal guns off the street.

“Each gun that’s taken off our streets and taken out of the hands of criminals is a life saved,” Grewal said.

The five people charged as part of “Operation Zombie” were allegedly selling illegal guns and drugs in Camden. Authorities say 36 guns were confiscated, including one used to murder a child.

“The guns recovered in this case included 10 military-style semi-automatic weapons – two of which were equipped with illegal large-capacity magazines,” Grewal said. “Many of these guns recovered in this case were allegedly obtained by straw purchases in Pennsylvania, including at gun shows.”

Grewal and Shapiro say that they will continue to work together in a joint effort to end gun violence.

"Philadelphia and Camden in many ways represent a single metropolitan area. Criminals don't hold their activities at the Delaware River and we must work together across our borders to stop them,” said Grewal.

"In a time of great division in our commonwealth, in our state and our country, the public should know that they have law enforcement leaders willing to work together to save lives,” Shapiro said.

Officials say that three of the five people are in custody. They are facing a variety of charges, including promoting organized street crime and the distribution of methamphetamine.

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