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The State

January 07, 1986

An anti-crime task force created by Gov. George Deukmejian reported that youth gang violence in California is escalating, particularly among Southeast Asian refugees, punk rockers, heavy metal music devotees and Satanic groups. However, Robert Philibosian, chairman of the state Task Force on Youth Gang Violence, said the panel was unable to provide statistical evidence of the rise in crimes by these groups. The panel said there are 600 to 800 youth gangs in California. In Los Angeles alone, the panel estimated, there are 50,000 gang members. The panel's report, which cost about $98,000, was based largely on a series of public hearings held around the state last year that included testimony from former gang members, law enforcement officials and community leaders.

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