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Four members of the notorious MS-13 gang have been charged with attempted murder for their alleged role in a Jamaica shooting in 2016 that left a 16-year-old suspected rival gang member paralyzed.

The arrests and indictment filed in federal court on Aug. 3 accuse Melvi Amador-Rios, Santos Amador-Rios, Yan Carlos Ramirez and Antonio Salvador of assault, murder conspiracy and attempted murder in-aid-of racketeering, along with a related firearms offense. The indictment is the latest in a series of federal prosecutions by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York against members of MS-13.

“As alleged, the defendants are members of MS-13, an international gang known for its culture of violence and murder,” stated United States Attorney Richard P. Donoghue. “They used their positions to direct, instruct and assist lower-level gang members to shoot and kill a suspected rival on the streets of Jamaica, Queens. We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to hold accountable those who spread fear in our communities by participating in such acts of violence.”

According to court records, Melvi Amador-Rios is the leader of the MS-13 branch Centrales Locos Salvatruchas (CLS), which operates in Jamaica. On Oct. 22, 2016, Amador-Rios directed a low-level member of the gang known as a “chequeo” to obtain a firearm from his brother, Santos Amador-Rios, and use the firearm to murder a rival gang member. Once the “chequeo” obtained the firearm, he enlisted two other CLS members to assist in the murder, records show.

Ramirez and Salvador then allegedly instructed the three “chequeos” on how to use the firearm and carry out the murder.

During the early morning hours of Oct. 23, 2016 in Jamaica, the three “chequeos” confronted the suspected member of the rival 18th Street gang, beat the victim and shot him in the head. The victim survived the attack but is now paraplegic, according to court records.

“Gang violence simply serves no purpose other than to poison our communities with fear and menace,” stated FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge William F. Sweeney, Jr. “These gang rivals acted on baseless rage, and this victim’s life is now changed forever. For as long as meaningless violence saturates our neighborhoods, the FBI New York Metro Safe Streets Task Force will not cease in conducting meaningful investigations to protect those living among this peril.”

Since 2010, the Eastern District of New York has charged members of MS-13 with carrying out more than 45 murders and has convicted dozens of MS-13 leaders and members in connection with those murders.

“Through close collaboration with our law enforcement partners at the FBI and the Eastern District of New York, the NYPD will continue to conduct aggressive, precisely-directed investigations into criminal groups like this,” stated NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill. “Such cases result in strong indictments that ultimately send these criminals to prison. And this important work stanches the violence – which is an essential step toward healing gang-plagued
communities and fulfilling our duty to work with and protect all New Yorkers, in everyneighborhood.”

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