More than 2,000 pounds of illegal fireworks have been confiscated in several investigations and raids across Los Angeles in recent days, City Attorney Mike Feuer said Thursday.
Seven people have been charged with possession or sales of illegal fireworks, mostly from sweeps in the Chinatown and Santee Alley areas.
“As important as the arrests and subsequent prosecution are, what’s most important from our effort is to send a very strong message that deters the sale in the first place,” Feuer said.
The sweeps were coordinated with other local agencies, including the Los Angeles Port Police, Los Angeles Fire Department and LAPD.
“This is a public safety effort designed to protect our kids from dangerous illegal fireworks,” Feuer said. He pointed to statistics showing 40 percent of all fireworks-involved injuries that require emergency attention affect children under the age of 15.
Local news from across Southern California
In the run up to the Fourth of July, dozens of agencies across the Southland have cracked down on fireworks retailers.
Investigators seized roughly 10 tons of fireworks during two weekend seizures in San Bernardino County.
Two weeks ago, Orange County officials seized 500 pounds of fireworks in Newport after discovering a man trying to sell them out of a truck parked behind a liquor store.
At a Pico Rivera warehouse in June, officers uncovered 12 tons of the contraband.