US indicts 22 members of MS-13 gang in killings

Members and associates of the MS-13 gang committed seven murders including several in which victims were hacked to death with machetes in a Southern California forest, according to a federal indictment released Tuesday. (July 16)

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U.S. targets key transnational criminal groups

(15 Oct 2018) Attorney General Jeff Sessions has announced a task force, headed by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, to step up the fight against 5 key transnational criminal organizations, including MS-13, the Sinaloa drug cartel and Lebanese Hezbollah. (Oct. 15)

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Trump Talks MS-13, Border Wall and Jay-Z

President Trump attacked Tennessee Democratic Senate Candidate Phil Bredesen as a “tool” of “MS-13 lover Nancy Pelosi.” At a rally in Nashville, Trump talked about and border control, reiterating that Mexico will pay for the border wall. (May 29)

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Trump Defends MS-13 ‘Animal’ Comment

President Donald Trump is defending his description of MS-13 gang members as “animals.” Trump says he was met with “rebuke” from Democrats when he described the gang members as animals last week. (May 23)

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Trump’s ‘Animal’ Rhetoric Ignites Debate

President Donald Trump referred to MS-13 members as animals and said he will continue to do so, despite backlash. Some congressional members say his remarks are offensive. While others say they are warranted when referring to violent criminals. (May 17)

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Trump Doubles Down on MS-13 ‘Animals’ Remark

President Donald Trump is defending his use of the word “animals” to describe members of the MS-13 street gang. Trump said he would continue to use the term to refer to violent gang members in spite of a sharp rebuke from Democratic leaders. (May 17)

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MS-13’s Active Members Are Laughing At Trump’s Crackdown (HBO)

MS-13 has long been known as one of the deadliest street gangs in the world, but under the Trump administration, the fight against this criminal network of mostly Salvadoran young men, many of whom are immigrants, has ramped up dramatically.

MS-13 (or Mara Salvatrucha) wasn’t created in El Salvador; it was born in Los Angeles in the 1980s, founded by refugees from El Salvador’s civil war. In the 1980s, many of those gang members were deported back to El Salvador, where they quickly took advantage of the war-torn nation.

Now, with the Trump administration vowing to eliminate the gang at all costs, VICE News gained rare access inside the MS-13 underworld in El Salvador as they are hunted by police and rival gangs. Members told VICE News that the rhetoric from the White House has struck a nerve and warned there will be deadly consequences to the crackdown.

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Inside El Salvador’s Jails (Excerpt from ‘Gangs of El Salvador’)

El Salvador is set to eclipse Honduras as the country with the highest homicide rate in the world. By the end of September 2015, there had been around 5,000 murders this year, in a country with a population of just over six million. El Salvador’s murder rate is now the highest it’s been since the end of the country’s brutal civil war — there is on average one murder an hour.

The staggering death toll follows the breakdown of a truce between powerful, rival gangs and the government. Police and military are now combatting the gangs head-on and gang members are being charged with a new crime — membership of a terrorist organization.

In this excerpt, VICE News reporter Danny Gold gains access inside the jail of Usulután, a small but violent, gang-plagued city two hours outside El Salvador’s capital. Inside the jail, members from opposing gangs — MS-13 and 18th Street Gang — are held in separate wings, while a different cell houses “reformed” gang members. Here, Gold interviews members of MS-13, as well as a member who has found religion and left the gang.

Watch “Gangs of El Salvador (Full Length)” – http://bit.ly/1lPmpyX

Read “Are El Salvador’s Murderous Gangs the Voice of the Oppressed? They Think So” – http://bit.ly/1NMvaQW

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Crime Reporting in the Murder Capital: San Pedro Sula Nights

San Pedro Sula, Honduras, has made it to the top of the list of the world’s most dangerous cities (outside of war zones) for three consecutive years, with an annual homicide rate of 187 per 100,000 people. Reporting crime in Honduras is considered a high-risk job — according to the Honduran National Human Rights Committee, at least 47 journalists and media executives have been murdered between 2003 and 2014.

VICE News spent four nights alongside Orlin Castro, a young reporter who covers the crimes that occur in the streets of San Pedro — which often result from the never-ending turf war between the 18th Street and MS-13 gangs, two of the city’s most notorious criminal groups.

Read “A Camera, Microphone, and Gun: At Night With A Crime Reporter In San Pedro Sula” – http://bit.ly/1BJ0M7I

Read “US Border Patrol Caught More Non-Mexicans Than Mexicans for the First Time Ever in 2014” – http://bit.ly/1w3twBu

Read “Honduras Is Combating Its Homicide Epidemic With Militarization” – http://bit.ly/1xJhW3K

Watch “Guns in Puerto Rico: Locked and Loaded in the Tropics” – http://bit.ly/13XCJVg

Watch “Immigrant America: Murder and Migration in Honduras” – http://bit.ly/1xSMGgl

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