2 Arrested Locally as Part of Massive MS-13 Gang Crackdown - NBC Boston

2 Arrested Locally as Part of Massive MS-13 Gang Crackdown

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    The local suspects arrested were Juan Martinez and Christian Alvarez-Hernandez. Martinez, 21, was arrested on Nov. 1, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Boston.

    (Published Thursday, Nov. 16, 2017)

    Two people were arrested in East Boston and Chelsea as part of a massive crackdown on the MS-13 street gang.

    The local suspects arrested were Juan Martinez and Christian Alvarez-Hernandez. Martinez, 21, was arrested on Nov. 1, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Boston.

    Martinez was charged with being an illegal alien in possession of a firearm after being found with a loaded gun by police responding to a report of an armed robbery in East Boston.

    The arrests were part of a nationwide operation dubbed "Operation Raging Bull," which netted a total of 267 arrests. The operation was led by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement as part of the ongoing effort to target and dismantle the violent street gang.

    AG Sessions Addresses MS-13 in Boston

    [NECN] AG Sessions Addresses MS-13 in Boston
    AG Jeff Sessions talks to law enforcement officials about transnational organized crime, taking aim at the MS-13 gang. 
    (Published Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017)

    "MS-13 has long been a priority for ICE. However we are now combating the gang with renewed focus and an unprecedented level of cooperation among DHS’s components and our domestic and international partners," said Thomas Homan, ICE deputy director and senior official performing the duties of the director.

    The first phase of the operation, which was announced previously, resulted in 53 arrests in El Salvador in September. The second phase was conducted across the United States from Oct. 8 to Nov. 11 and concluded with 214 MS-13 arrests nationwide.

    Sixteen of the 214 arrested were U.S. citizens and 198 were foreign nationals, of which only five had legal status to be in the country.

    In addition to Massachusetts, the arrests were made in Arizona, California, Maryland, Iowa and Texas.

    The charges ranged from murder to aggravated robbery, racketeering, drug trafficking and possession, firearms offenses, domestic violence, assault, forgery, drunken driving and illegal entry/re-entry.

    The MS-13 gang, also called Mara Salvatrucha, started in Los Angeles in the mid-1980s. Authorities say that it has more than 30,000 members worldwide and more than 10,000 in the U.S.

    Charles Reed/U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

    Attorney General Jeff Sessions traveled to El Salvador in July on a mission to work with that country's government against MS-13. He vowed to wipe out the gang altogether in a visit to Boston earlier this year.


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