A large number of members of the violent gang MS-13 were arrested on Wednesday morning by federal and local officers in a sweep following a two-year racketeering investigation. The ATF, FBI, and local police department raided two dozen locations, resulting in the successful arrest of major players of the gang that has been plaguing Los Angeles since the 80s.

As reported by the authorities, 44 suspects were taken in total, and have been charged with murder and racketeering. This includes the 21 arrested on Wednesday morning. Three of those arrested from the notorious gang were fugitives.

The authorities also believe that the gang's widespread power throughout Los Angeles was hit hard by the sweep.

Details of Wednesday morning's sweep

The sweep occurred shortly after 4 a.m. when ATF agents, heavily armed with rifles, raided a building on the corner of Exposition Boulevard and Western Avenue by Exposition Park. The agents also used an armored vehicle to get into the building. Once inside, the agents and police detectives found gang members involved in human trafficking. The front of the store was blocked with pure garbage. Of course, the agents and detectives made their way through the rear of this small business near Exposition Park. Possible trafficking victims may have been rescued as well, but no reports have been made to confirm this.

Many of the suspects caught were handcuffed and lined up against a fence by the armored truck. The 21 suspects included both women and men -- a few of them considered to be major players in the Salvadorian gang MS-13. Out of the 44 arrested, 12 are considered to be senior leaders in the gang. This was a major score for the authorities.

Who is MS-13?

The notorious gang known as MS-13 has been around since the 1980s in Los Angeles. MS-13 (better known as Mara Salvatrucha) started in LA when Salvadorians migrated to the US to get away from the civil war in El Salvador. Some of the original members of MS were soldiers in El Salvador that left the civil war. The gang started to oppose big Mexican gangs in Los Angeles.

Now, MS-13 is one of the deadliest in the country.

As MS-13 members were deported from the US and back to El Salvador, the gang centralized itself even more in its home country. Now, the gang has spread throughout the US, hitting major cities like it did in Los Angeles in the 80s and 90s. This gang is known for being ruthless and butchering its enemies. They are known to torture and maim people who oppose them at every level.