Report: More than 600 violent MS-13 gang members arrested since 2017. Where’s the media coverage?

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WASHINGTON, DC – President Donald Trump and the US Department of Justice’ Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force designated the violent gang MS-13 as a top priority to apprehend and prosecute.

As a result, over 600 alleged gang members have been taking into custody since the President took office. In total, over 700 alleged gang members have been arrested since 2016.

According to the FBI, Mara Salvatrucha, better known as MS-13, are a gang of mostly Salvadoran nationals or first generation Salvadoran-Americans. The gang operates in 42 states and Washington, D.C. and has roughly 6,000 to 10,000 members throughout the country. 

The gang is notorious for drug trafficking, murder, rape, and numerous other violent crimes. 

The FBI said:

“Most of these crimes, you’ll notice, have one thing in common – they are exceedingly violent.  And while most of the violence is directed toward other MS-13 members or rival street gangs, innocent citizens often get caught in the crossfire.”

Because of their violence, the President and the DOJ have made it a priority to identify and apprehend these gang members. Since 2016, federal prosecutors have charged a total of 749 gang members, which has led to over 500 convictions for various crimes. 

Almost 400 of those convictions occurred while President Trump has been in office. Of those convictions, 37 of them led to life sentences for their involvement in gang activities. 

President Trump signed an executive order in 2017 for the federal government to disrupt any transnational criminal organization, which included MS-13. Part of that executive order required the DOJ to work closely with federal law enforcement agencies to close down the criminal organizations.

In a speech on Long Island, NY, in 2017 President Trump said:

“Together we’re going to restore safety to our streets and peace to our communities and we’re going to destroy the vile, criminal cartel MS-13 and many other gangs.” 

Of those arrested, the DOJ is seeking the death penalty for two people that were allegedly involved in the MS-13 gang. In one case, Alexi Saenz is alleged to have murdered seven people from 2016 until 2017, while he was in New York. Four of his alleged victims were in high school and six of the seven were killed with a machete or baseball bat.

The other death penalty case involves gang member Elmer Zelaya Martinez, who allegedly assisted in the murders of two teenagers in Virginia in 2016. Those victims were 14 and 17 years of age.

In 2019, Attorney General William Barr went a step further and created a specialized task force, named Joint Task Force Vulcan, which was designed to eliminate MS-13 from the United States. The Task Force extended beyond US borders and included El Salvador, Mexico, Honduras, and Guatemala. 

The Task Force prioritized federal prosecutions against gang members and leaders of MS-13. As a result, numerous indictments were gained from US Attorneys’ Offices throughout the nation. 

Barr said:

“In 2017, the President directed the Department of Justice to go to war against MS-13, and we did just that.

“In coordination with our partners at the Department of Homeland Security, the Justice Department’s law enforcement components have successfully investigated, charged, and arrested command and control elements of MS-13 responsible for particularly heinous crimes against our communities.

“Joint Task Force Vulcan’s operations have significantly degraded MS-13 capabilities. 

“While there is still work to be done, the Department of Justice remains steadfastly committed to protecting Americans from MS-13, and we will not rest until we have successfully eradicated this violent gang.”

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Democrat VP nominee Kamala Harris refused death penalty for illegal immigrant, MS-13 gang member murderer

October 12, 2020

 

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – In 2009, as San Francisco District Attorney, Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) refused to seek the death penalty when an illegal alien and MS-13 gang member killed a father and two of his sons.

According to reports, on June 22, 2008, 48-year-old Anthony Bologna and his three sons, Michael, 18, Andrew, 18, and Matthew, 16, were driving home from a family party in San Francisco. An illegal alien and MS-13 gang member, Edwin Ramos, 25, was driving alongside them and randomly opened fire.

Ramos fatally shot Anthony and his two sons, Michael and Matthew. Prosecutors alleged that Ramos shot at the Bolognas after mistaking them for rival gang members. Allegedly, the shooting was in retaliation for the shooting of a fellow MS-13 gang member earlier that day.

It was later revealed that Ramos had been arrested and convicted on a number of previous violent crimes. However, San Francisco’s sanctuary city policy shielded him from being turned over to federal immigration officials. 

After Ramos was charged with three counts of murder, Bologna’s mother, Danielle, pleaded publicly with Harris to seek the death penalty.

She said in a statement:

“The district attorney really needs to pay attention. She doesn’t have kids, she doesn’t know what this means.”

Danielle added:

“Seeking the death penalty, this will make a statement so people won’t just kill families for no reason. They have the power to stop this. They have to stop with the excuses, this is not her family, this is my family.”

She continued:

“Violence in the city has gone too far. Nothing is getting done. Why did we put her here, if she is not going to stop this? This is huge. I have lost a husband and two kids.”

Harris had previously committed to never seeking the death penalty as district attorney, however, there was speculation at the time that with Harris running for state attorney general the following year, she might shift direction. 

But, that did not happen. Instead, Harris said that her office would do everything it could to make sure Ramos “dies in prison for his horrific crimes.” She claimed that her office spent “many, many months” reviewing the case, but did not give a specific reason for her decision not to seek the death penalty.

Harris said:

“We have thoroughly reviewed the facts and the law in this case. It was a complicated analysis that involved many issues, many facts, and many laws.”

The decision outraged the Bologna family. Marti McKee, a spokeswoman for the family said:

“She feels that the city of San Francisco has let her and her family down. She feels that not only did she lose half her family, she lost her home because she was forced to move so she could protect the rest of her family.”

McKee added:

“With this decision, it will just never end.”

Instead of the death penalty, Ramos was sentenced to three life terms in prison without the possibility of parole. Allegedly, Harris’ opposition to the death penalty was tossed out when she sought the votes of Californians in her run for attorney general.

She was elected after saying that she would “enforce” capital punishment and defended the death penalty in court back in 2014. Then, she switched her stance again in 2019, while in the United States Senate she opposed the death penalty. 

She even applauded California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) when he placed a moratorium on the state’s capital punishment laws. Harris called the death penalty “immoral, discriminatory, ineffective, and a gross misuse of taxpayer dollars.”

Now, as Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s running mate, Harris is even more opposed to the death penalty, calling for eliminating it all together.

On immigration, Biden and Harris have vowed to a nationwide sanctuary policy that fights states and localities who are committed to cooperating with federal immigration officials.

 

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