22 Alleged MS-13 Gang Members Named in Federal Racketeering Indictment

July 16, 2019 - 10:27 am

A federal racketeering indictment targeting members of the LA-based MS-13 gang was announced by law enforcement officials Tuesday morning.

Twenty-two alleged members of the MS-13 street gang have been indicted by a federal grand jury.

Most of the 22 people allegedly participated in a series of murders, including several slayings in which victims were hacked to death with machetes in the Angeles National Forest.

A 12-count indictment unsealed alleges that members and associates of the gang murdered seven people over the last two years, according to the US Attorney's Office.

The indictment charges gang leaders who allegedly authorized and coordinated the murders, the US Attorney's Office said.

The indictment also charged gang members who allegedly murdered and attempted to murder rival gang members, those who were perceived to be cooperating with law enforcement, and, in one instance, a homeless man who was temporarily living in a park controlled by the gang.

The indictment focused on the Fulton clique from the San Fernando Valley. In one murder, according to the US Attorney's Office, several MS-13 members allegedly targeted a rival gang member who was believed to have defaced MS-13 graffiti. On March 6, 2017, according to the indictment, the rival gang member was abducted, choked, and driven to a remote location in the Angeles National Forest, where six people attacked him with a machete.

The victim was dismembered, and his body parts were thrown into a canyon after one of the defendants allegedly cut the heart out of the victim’s body.

This is a street gang connected to unbelievable violence and disturbing murders in Los Angeles, and the San Fernando Valley allegedly used to intimidate other gangs.

They're also allegedly behind complex extortion schemes, robberies and drug dealing.

The 78-page grand jury indictment is expected to be revealed at a press conference in downtown Los Angeles' Federal Building.

Former federal prosecutor Laurie Levinson tells KNX says this was a concerted effort by both local and federal authorities.

"MS-13 is a very violent gang and this particular clique of it is extraordinarily violent so this is a significant move by the federal authorities. This is a gang that is international, extraordinarily violent and present here in Los Angeles," said Laurie Levinson, a former federal prosecutor.

The case is part of a two-year investigation by the FBI, LA Sheriff's Office and Police Department.