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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release July 22, 1998

The President's Anti-Gang and Youth Violence Strategy

Targeting Gangs and Violent Juveniles ($160 million per year)

Hires new prosecutors and expands anti-gang task forces so that state and local prosecutors can crack down on gang members and violent juveniles;

Treats gangs like organized crime by expanding use of racketeering statutes (i.e., RICO) for gang-related offenses;

Adds probation officers so cities can replicate Boston's successful Operation Night Light, where probation officers work with police to make sure young offenders are complying with their probation;

Curbs gang witness intimidation by giving U.S. Attorneys new prosecutorial tools and allowing judges to hold gang members without bail pending trial; and

Establishes juvenile gun and drug courts to ensure that youthful offenders receive appropriate and timely punishment.

Cracking Down on Guns and Gun Traffickers ($28 million per year)

Prohibits juveniles convicted of violent crimes from buying guns on their 21st birthday;

Increases penalties for selling handguns to juveniles and juvenile handgun possession; and

Assists law enforcement in determining and responding to local gun trafficking patterns by tracing firearms recovered at crime scenes and hiring additional ATF agents to crackdown on illegal gun traffickers.

Keeping Kids In School, Off Drugs and Out of Trouble ($295 million per year)

Expands efforts to keep schools open from 3 to 8 pm -- the time when most violent juvenile crimes are committed -- and to promote anti-truancy initiatives and curfews that keep kids off the streets; and

Increases penalties for using kids to sell drugs, selling drugs to kids or selling drugs in or near a schools.