Brazil police say lawyers linked to organized crime arrested

SAO PAULO (AP) " Brazilian police say they've arrested at least 30 people suspected of laundering money for one of Brazil's most notorious organized crime groups.

An official of the Sao Paulo State Public Safety Department says many of those arrested Tuesday are lawyers.

He says they're suspected of laundering the money from drug-dealing and extortion operations directed by the prison-based gang called the First Capital Command. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the press.

The gang was founded in 1993 by hardened criminals inside Sao Paulo's Taubate Penitentiary to pressure authorities to improve prison conditions. It quickly started using its power inside the state's prisons to direct drug dealing and extortion operations on the outside.

This story has been automatically published from the Associated Press wire which uses US spellings

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