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Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Hector Portillo, a member of the international MS-13 street gang, was sentenced to 38 years’ imprisonment

Hector Portillo, a member of the international MS-13 street gang, was sentenced to 38 years’ imprisonment by United States District Judge Sterling Johnson at the federal courthouse in Brooklyn. Portillo previously pleaded guilty to racketeering, including predicate acts of murder and attempted murder. After serving the term of incarceration, Portillo is subject to deportation to El Salvador.The sentencing was announced by Benton J. Campbell, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York.As detailed in the superseding indictment and other court filings by the government, beginning in 2000, Portillo was a soldier of MS-13, also known as “La Mara Salvatrucha,” and engaged in a series of violent crimes in Flushing, New York, including conspiracy to murder and assault members of rival gangs, such as the Crips, the Bloods, and the Latin Kings. At his previous guilty plea, Portillo admitted that he and other gang members sought to retaliate against members of the Bloods gang for an earlier altercation, during which Portillo was stabbed. During the early morning hours of Christmas Eve 2006, Portillo and another gang member approached a group of youths whom Portillo believed to be rival Bloods gang members, including the person who had stabbed Portillo. Portillo shot Pashad Gray multiple times at close range, only later learning that Gray was not the individual who had stabbed him. Gray died of his wounds. Portillo was also convicted of participating in a drive-by shooting in February 2006, during which a teenager was shot, but survived.“Violent street gangs such as MS-13 prey on our community and relish the beating, stabbing, and shooting of perceived rivals, with disregard for bystanders caught in their cross-hairs,” stated United States Attorney Campbell. “Today’s sentence reflects the severity of such crimes and affirms our unwavering commitment to dismantle street gangs street gangs and bring their members to justice.” Mr. Campbell extended his grateful appreciation to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”), the Queens County District Attorney’s Office, the New York City Police Department, and the New York City Department of Probation for their assistance in this case.MS-13 is the largest street gang on Long Island. Over the past five years, investigations by the United States Attorney’s Office, ICE, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the NYPD have solved multiple murders on Long Island and in New York City, and resulted in felony convictions of more than a dozen MS-13 leaders and 120 MS-13 soldiers.The government’s case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Jason A. Jones, Ali Kazemi, and Marshall L. Miller.


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