Press "Enter" to skip to content

Ten MS-13 Gang Members Indicted on Murder and Racketeering Charges

A federal grand jury in the Southern District of Texas returned an indictment yesterday charging 10 alleged MS-13 gang members with crimes including racketeering conspiracy, murder, attempted murder, and conspiracy to murder in aid of racketeering, related firearms charges, and obstruction of justice.

“The charges in this case reflect the Justice Department’s commitment to dismantling and disrupting MS-13, a criminal organization that sows violence, terror, and fear in communities across the country,” said Attorney General Merrick B. Garland. “We will continue to work closely alongside our law enforcement partners to root out criminal organizations wherever they exist and break the cycles of violence that they perpetuate.”

According to allegations in the indictment, the defendants were leaders and members of La Mara Salvatrucha, more commonly known as MS-13. In total, the indictment includes criminal charges related to seven murders, one attempted murder, and one murder conspiracy.

“Protecting the safety of our communities is fundamental to what we do at the FBI,” said Director Christopher Wray of the FBI. “This indictment is one example of the persistent work being done by the FBI and our partners to combat violent gangs like MS-13 that inundate communities with violence. The FBI is committed to reducing violent crime and combating the threat criminal enterprises pose. We are proud to work alongside our local, state, Tribal and federal enforcement partners in bringing violent members of criminal organizations like MS-13 to justice.”

The indictment alleges that beginning prior to at least in or around 2015, and continuing through today, the defendants engaged in a racketeering conspiracy involving murder, extortion, drug trafficking, robbery, and obstruction of justice.

“This case is an important step in curbing crime in Texas and a message to criminal organizations that federal authorities are working with local law enforcement to stop the violence,” said U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery for the Southern District of Texas. “The charges in this case are extensive and violent. We will continue the fight and will stop at nothing to bring those who we believe are putting our communities at risk to justice.”

The murders and other crimes charged in the indictment were allegedly committed in the Southern District of Texas and the District of Maryland. Defendants Franklin Trejo-Chavarria, aka Impulsivo, and Julio Vigil-Lopez, aka Hades, reside in El Salvador. All other defendants are in law enforcement custody in the United States.

“As demonstrated by the allegations in today’s indictments, transnational criminal street gangs like MS-13 are a plague upon society that must be rooted out in the interest of public safety and national security,” said Special Agent in Charge Mark Dawson of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Houston. “HSI Houston is committed to continue to work alongside our law enforcement partners to bring an end to the relentless terror and violence that they reign on the innocent and law-abiding members of our communities.”

According to the indictment, under the authority of MS-13 leadership in El Salvador and elsewhere, members engaged in a variety of violent crimes throughout the Southern District of Texas and District of Maryland. Over the past several years, law enforcement uncovered several alleged homicides and attempted murders related to these cliques and their associates. The investigation revealed that these criminal acts were committed to maintain the gang’s control, to retaliate against rival gangs and to seek retribution against those who were believed to have cooperated with law enforcement against the gang.

“This indictment is a testament to the strong partnerships we have with our federal and local agencies to help bring violent gang offenders to justice,” said Houston Police Chief Troy Finner. “We thank our partners and look forward to working together to help keep our communities safe.”

Leaders in El Salvador and elsewhere allegedly authorized the acts to ensure individual members and cliques followed the customs, rules, and protocols of the larger MS-13 enterprise.

The seven murders alleged in the indictment span from 2015 through 2018 and include a range of victims. These murders were allegedly brutal in nature and include the killing of a juvenile female and a police informant. The murders also included multiple acts of mutilation and dismemberment with machetes, according to the charges.

The FBI, HSI, the Houston Police Department, the Galveston Police Department, the Texas Department of Public Safety, and the Prince George’s County Police Department are investigating the case. The U.S. Marshals Service and DEA provided assistance.

Trial Attorneys Julie A. Finocchiaro, Matthew K. Hoff, and Gerald A. Collins from the Criminal Division’s Organized Crime and Gang Section and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Britini Cooper and John M. Lewis of the Southern District of Texas are prosecuting the case.

This prosecution is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

An indictment is merely an allegation. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Name, Location

Age

Charges

Max Penalty

Franklin Trejo-Chavarria, aka Impulsivo

El Salvador

25

Count 1: RICO Conspiracy;

Counts 2 and 3: VICAR Attempted Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Counts 7 and 8: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Count 9: Obstruction of Justice;

Counts 13 and 14: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder

Life

10 years

Life (or death)

20 years

Life (or death)

Julio Vigil-Lopez, aka Hades

El Salvador

25

Count 1: RICO Conspiracy;

Counts 10 and 11: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Count 12: Obstruction of Justice;

Counts 15 and 16: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Counts 17 and 18: Using a firearm to cause death

Life

Life (or death)

20 years

Life (or death)

Life

Walter Antonio Chicas-Garcia, aka Walter, aka Mejia

Houston, TX

25

Count 1: RICO Conspiracy;

Counts 7 and 8: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Count 9: Obstruction of Justice;

Counts 13 and 14: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder

Life

Life (or death)

20 years

Life (or death)

Luis Ernesto Carbajal-Peraza, aka Destino, aka Chele

Houston, TX

30

Count 1: RICO Conspiracy;

Counts 4 and 5: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder; 

Count 6: Obstruction of Justice;

Counts 10 and 11: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Count 12: Obstruction of Justice

Life

Life (or death)

20 years

Life (or death)

20 years

Carlos Alexi Garcia-Gongora, aka Garcia, aka Lil Maligno

Houston, TX

24

Count 1: RICO Conspiracy;

Counts 4 and 5: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Count 6: Obstruction of Justice;

Counts 10 and 11: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Count 12: Obstruction of Justice

Life

Life (or death)

20 years

Life (or death)

20 years

Wilson Jose Ventura-Mejia, aka Discreto, aka Disco

Houston, TX

26

Count 1: RICO Conspiracy;

Count 6: Obstruction of Justice;

Counts 7 and 8: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Count 9: Obstruction of Justice

Life

20 years

Life (or death)

20 years

Wilman Rivas-Guido, aka Inquieto

Houston, TX

26

Count 1: RICO Conspiracy;

Count 6: Obstruction of Justice;

Counts 7 and 8:  VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Count 9: Obstruction of Justice;

Counts 15 and 16: VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Counts 17 and 18: Using a firearm to cause death

Life

20 years

Life (or death)

20 years

Life (or death)

Life

Carlos Elias Henriquez-Torres, aka Kalin

Houston, TX

22

Count 1: RICO Conspiracy;

Count 6: Obstruction of Justice;

Counts 7 and 8:  VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Count 9: Obstruction of Justice

Life

20 years

Life (or death)

20 years

Angel Miguel Aguilar-Ochoa, aka Darki

Houston, TX

37

Counts 7 and 8:  VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Count 9: Obstruction of Justice

Life (or death)

20 years

Marlon Miranda-Moran, aka Chinki

Houston, TX

23

Counts 7 and 8:  VICAR Murder and Conspiracy to Murder;

Count 9: Obstruction of Justice

Life (or death)

20 years

Go to Source
Author:

%d bloggers like this: