A months-long investigation by federal and local authorities resulted in 12 arrests Friday and the seizure of cocaine and methamphetamine.
"Operation: Family Ties" was the second major multi-agency drug operation in the Omaha area announced in the past three months.
At least five of the people arrested were members of the Must Be Criminal clique of the national Surenos XXIII gang, said U.S. Attorney Deborah Gilg. They are believed to be among the gang's leaders.
"This is the dismantlement of a significant drug trafficking operation in the area," she said.
It was named Family Ties because three of the people arrested are siblings, she said.
The sting was the result of months of investigation by the FBI and various law enforcement agencies, said Weysan Dun, FBI special agent in charge.
It began in June, when Bellevue and La Vista police realized they were tracking the same man and that he was a leader of the Must Be Criminal, or MBC, clique.
The investigation culminated about 6:30 a.m. Friday, when 180 agents and officers began serving search warrants.
There were so many officers because "there were some safety concerns," Dun said. He said the arrests were conducted without incident.
Those arrested on federal charges were Omaha residents David "Spooky" Monarrez, 28; Guillermo "Memo" Monarrez, 25; Alex "Mike" Brablec, 24; Yajaira Monarrez-Zendejas, 19; Israel Mendoza, 22; Daniel Drews, 20; Jorge "Baby Boy" Rolando Flores, 22; Alberto "A-Rod'' Rodriguez-Ruiz. 26; and Miguel Adrian Diaz, 25.
Three more Omahans were arrested on state charges: Amy Waits, 35; Matt Salcedo, 41; and Roxanna Padilla, 23.
Authorities seized cocaine, meth, marijuana, guns, more than $30,000 in cash and a vehicle.
Investigators were cataloguing the drugs and guns Friday and didn't know exact totals.
In December, authorities announced a similar task force that resulted in 11 arrests, which included people responsible for much of the meth trade in the area.
Omaha Police Chief Alex Hayes said the latest arrests should send a message to criminals: Watch out.
"We want them to be nervous," he said. "They need to be nervous because we're onto them."
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