Police officers raided homes of members of the Abu Latif crime family on Wednesday morning, seizing weapons and cash, arresting 21 people around northern Israel.
The Abu Latif family has been labeled by police as one of the three biggest Arab crime families in Israel. Around 700 policemen, border guard soldiers, special units and enforcement agents were involved in the raids.
Police said its year-long investigation uncovered one billion shekels ($288 million) in tax evasion. The group is also accused of murder, extortion and money laundering.
Undercover officers posed as contractors in order to become targets of the crime family’s extortion.
The police have been waging a long struggle against the organization, culminating in a shootout that took place a year and a half ago, in which one of the organization’s members was killed by the policemen in Maghar, a northern town with a mixed population of Christians, Muslims and Druze.
National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir said, “The long hand of the Israel Police will catch the crime families sooner or later – every crime family, even from the Arab sector, will know that there is no immunity.”