Maryland jury convicts two MS-13 gang leaders

A federal jury in Maryland found two El Salvadorian nationals guilty of participating in illegal MS-13 gang activity on Thursday.

Between 2015 and 2018, Junior Noe Alvarado-Requeno, also known as Insolente or Trankilo, and Miguel Angel Corea Diaz, known as Reaper, controlled an operation known as the Sailors Clique to conduct murder, extortion, drug trafficking, and other illegal activities, according to the Justice Department. They also sent part of their earnings to MS-13 gang leaders in El Salvador, officials said.

"Junior Noe Alvarado-Requeno, aka Insolente, aka Trankilo, 25, and Miguel Angel Corea Diaz, aka Reaper, 39, were convicted of multiple racketeering-related offenses," the DOJ said in a press release. "Alverado-Requeno and Corea-Diaz were both convicted on racketeering conspiracy, conspiracy to commit murder in aid of racketeering, murder in aid of racketeering, and conspiracy to distribute controlled substances."

NINE DEFENDANTS ADDED TO CALIFORNIA INDICTMENT AGAINST MS-13 FOR FOUR PREVIOUSLY UNSOLVED MURDERS

MS-13, also known as La Mara Salvatrucha, was formed during the 1970s and 80s in Los Angeles, California. The group initially intended to protect El Salvadoran immigrants but is now an international criminal organization that engages in drug trafficking, human trafficking, murder, and other illegal activity. It is known for committing particularly brutal crimes.

One of the victims of the Sailors Clique's activities, who was suspected to be a rival gang member but was later revealed not to be, was stabbed to death 153 times, according to the DOJ.

"MS-13 terrorizes communities across the WesternHemisphere using fear, violence, and intimidation," said Kenneth Polite Jr, assistant attorney general of the DOJ Criminal Division. "This prosecution demonstrates the Department of Justice's commitment to dismantling this criminal organization and protecting all people."

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Alvarado-Requeno and Corea Diaz were two of five suspected MS-13 members the DOJ charged last year for murders and attempted murders.

Following Wednesday's convictions, each faces mandatory sentences of life in prison.

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