In 2017, a 16-year-old low-level member of the violent MS-13 gang was suspected of working with law enforcement. The leader of his particular faction of the gang allegedly authorized his murder.
Now, two years later, that suspected leader and two other members have been indicted for the murder: Local free newspaper the Queens Chronicle reported them as 28-year-old Melvi Amador-Rios (the apparent leader of the faction), 22-year-old Josue Leiva, and 24-year-old Luis Rivas. Rivas is a new defendant added on in the 18-count superseding indictment, the Chronicle reported. The “indictment was filed Thursday in Brooklyn federal court, charging three members of the vicious gang variously with racketeering, murder, attempted murder, murder conspiracy, robbery and related firearms charges,” the outlet reported.
The new indictment included the murder charges against the three members.
The story of the 16-year-old Julio Vasquez’s death is a little complicated. Amador-Rios allegedly suspected a low-level gang member, referred to in an indictment as John Doe 2, was associating with a rival gang. Amador-Rios authorized the murder of John Doe 2. The leader of the Centrales Locos Salvatruchas faction of MS-13 then suspected that another low-level member, referred to as John Doe 3, had warned John Doe 2 about his impending murder. Amador-Rios then tasked Vasquez with killing John Doe 3. Vasquez failed and was subsequently suspected of working with law enforcement. Amador-Rios then ordered Vasquez’s murder as well.
On May 16, 2017, Vasquez was brought to a wooded area of Alley Pond Park and was allegedly stabbed multiple times by Leiva and Rivas. Vasquez died as a result of his injuries, and his body was found five days later.
“The superseding indictment also adds a robbery charge and associated firearms offense against Amador-Rios and Rivas. On Jan. 8, 2017, they allegedly robbed a money transfer business in Jamaica at gunpoint, and pistol-whipped an employee,” the Chronicle reported. “The defendants face life in prison if convicted.”
Arrests for MS-13 gang members have appeared to pick up in recent years. In July, it was reported that a high school declined to inform parents and students that a 16-year-old student was murdered by MS-13 members. At least five of the gang members arrested for the murder were also students at Panorama High School.
Earlier this month, yet another group of MS-13 members were arrested in Maryland for murder. As The Daily Wire previously reported, six members of MS-13 murdered Daniel Cuellar after he allegedly flashed the sign of a rival gang. MS-13 members stalked him and stabbed him to death. More from the Wire:
Maryland has been struggling with gang violence for some time. In July, four teenagers were arrested for beating 14-year-old Ariana Funes-Diaz to death. Two of the four were members of MS-13, who feared Funes-Diaz would tell police about a gang-related kidnapping two months earlier in Washington, D.C., WBAL reported.
New York has also seen its share of MS-13 gang violence. A 16-year-old was stabbed after leaving a Long Island Burger King earlier this year. The murders were allegedly orchestrated my illegal alien members of MS-13.