Agents say roundup netted nearly 2,000 fugitives

ATLANTA - Almost 2,000 fugitives were arrested in Georgia during the month of June in a special roundup by federal, state and local law enforcement agents, authorities said Thursday.


Overall, 1,488 outstanding warrants were cleared and dozens of weapons were seized along with more than 12 kilograms of narcotics in Operation Falcon, which stands for Federal and Local Cops Organized Nationally.

They included 18 people wanted for murder, 244 for assault, 15 for kidnapping and 61 for robbery. Another 61 were arrested for sex offenses or failure to register as a sex offender.

"Our mission here is to take the most violent fugitives off the streets," said James Ergas, supervisory inspector of the Southeast Regional Fugitive Task Force in Atlanta.

This is the fifth year of Operation Falcon. Nationally, 35,190 fugitives were apprehended last month by 42 federal agencies, 209 state and 1,973 local sheriffs' and police departments.

Ergas and U.S. Marshal Richard Mecum said 1,195 of the fugitives were in the 46 counties in north Georgia, while there were 460 in the middle district of Georgia and 326 in the southern district for a total of 1,927.

"This has probably been the best year we've had so far," Mecum said.

About 850 law enforcement officers, working in teams, participated in the Georgia roundup. Local officers were specially deputized as U.S. marshals, allowing them to cross jurisdictions, Mecum said.

Among those apprehended was Gavin Murray, who was wanted in New York State for murder, parole violation and escape, due to his mistaken release from Sing Sing Prison after serving time on a weapons charge. He was found sitting in an associate's vehicle at the Atlanta airport.

Jonathan "Q-Genius" Quaweay, wanted for allegedly trying to kill four people by opening fire with a shotgun at a Providence, R.I., strip club, was arrested by Task Force members and Atlanta police at an apartment complex.



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