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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Mexico

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Attorney General and U.S. Attorney John Anderson Announce Updates on Operation Legend

Operation already impacting gun and dangerous crime in Albuquerque

Kansas City, MO – At a press conference in Kansas City, Missouri, today, Attorney General William P. Barr and U.S. Attorney John Anderson announced updates on Operation Legend.

The Attorney General launched the operation on July 8, 2020, as a sustained, systematic and coordinated law enforcement initiative in which federal law enforcement agencies work in conjunction with state and local law enforcement officials to address persistently high rates of crimes in cities like Albuquerque. The initiative is named in honor of four-year-old LeGend Taliferro, who was shot and killed while he slept early in the morning of June 29 in Kansas City. 

To date, 16 defendants in Albuquerque have been charged with federal crimes under Operation Legend, Those crimes include charges for felon in possession of a firearm, possession of a stolen firearm, carjacking, violations of the Hobbs Act, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking. Other drug trafficking charges include distribution of a controlled substance, conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance, and possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance.

“It has been clear from the persistently high violent crime rate that Albuquerque needed assistance, and Operation Legend is providing just that,” said John Anderson, U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico, who joined the Attorney General in Kansas City for the event. “The operation is off to a promising start, as we are already prosecuting cases under this initiative. Operation Legend was developed and implemented to address gun and dangerous crime, and is not intended to police any type of assembly, protest, or other First Amendment activity. We’ve held that promise and our record bears that out.

“I remain grateful to the Attorney General for his commitment to this effort,” said Anderson. “I also appreciate the hard work of law enforcement involved in the operation. The successes we’ve experienced so far are a testament to the coordination and cooperation of our partnering agencies.”

Launched first in Kansas City, on July 8, 2020, the operation was expanded to Chicago and Albuquerque on July 22, 2020, to Cleveland, Detroit, and Milwaukee on July 29, 2020, to St. Louis and Memphis on August 6, 2020, and to Indianapolis on August 14, 2020.

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Topic(s): 
Operation Legend
Violent Crime
Contact: 
Scott Howell Public Affairs Officer Office of the U.S. Attorney District of New Mexico (505) 379-9888
Press Release Number: 
20-138
Updated September 1, 2020