Seventeen members of the notoriously violent MS-13 were indicted Thursday on murder, drug and conspiracy charges for a range of alleged crimes on Long Island, authorities said.
Authorities pinned a series of killings and disappearances on the gang that have had officials combing wooded areas and parks in recent months in search of evidence and human remains.
“These indictments strike a heavy blow to the gang’s operations on Long Island,” said Nassau County DA Madeline Singas.
“These alleged gang members have terrorized vulnerable immigrant communities, trafficked deadly heroin into our neighborhoods, and this coalition of more than 22 agencies nationwide will continue to be unrelenting in our efforts to dismantle MS-13.
What began as a local drug investigation revealed a ruthless MS-13 operation as brutal as any across the country, officials said.
What they learned was that local gang cliques, reporting to leaders in El Salvador, were traveling between Maryland and Long Island, where rivals were murdered, as were disloyal members who cooperated with law enforcement or tried to leave the gang.
Two of the suspects were indicted in connection with the murder of Angel Soler, 16.
(National Center for Missing & Ex)
Two of the suspects were indicted in connection with the murder of Angel Soler, 16, of Roosevelt, whose mutilated body was found Oct. 19 in remote woods near the Southern State Parkway, where cement was poured over his body.
He was killed with a machete.
Members of the gang who were arrested were involved in distributing about $1 million worth of heroin, prosecutors said.
President Trump has often cited MS-13 activity in his quest for immigration reform.