Trump administration orders federal prosecutors to seek the death penalty for MS-13 gang leader

Trump administration orders federal prosecutors to seek the death penalty for MS-13 gang leader

The Justice Department has authorized federal prosecutors to seek the death penalty against a 24-year-old MS-13 gang leader charged in connection to a series of murders – including the brutal baseball bat killing of two teen girls.

If convicted for any of the seven murders, Jairo Saenz could be executed for the killings, according to a new filing in the Central Islip federal court. 

Saenz is the second-in-command of the Brentwood/Central Islip chapter of the Sailors Locos Salvatruchas Westside clique. 

Prosecutors are also seeking the death penalty against Saenz’s brother, Alexi Saenz. Trump referred to the brother as a ‘bloodthirsty MS-13 leader,’ the New York Post reports.

The Trump Administration has given the green light for federal prosecutors to seek the death penalty for 24-year-old Jairo Saenz

The Trump Administration has given the green light for federal prosecutors to seek the death penalty for 24-year-old Jairo Saenz 

Nisa Mickens

Kayla Cuevas

Saenz was originally brought into custody in March 2017 and charged with murder for the September 13, 2016 killings of Brentwood, New York high school students Nisa Mickens and Kayla Cuevas

In jail, Saenz is said to have taken part in violent attacks on other inmates, assaulted corrections officers and has attempted to identify cooperators for retaliation, according to the filing.  

Saenz was originally brought into custody in March 2017 and charged with murder for the September 13, 2016 killings of Brentwood, New York high school students Nisa Mickens and Kayla Cuevas. 

Prosecutors are also seeking the death penalty against Saenz's brother, Alexi Saenz. Trump referred to the brother as a 'bloodthirsty MS-13 leader'

Prosecutors are also seeking the death penalty against Saenz’s brother, Alexi Saenz. Trump referred to the brother as a ‘bloodthirsty MS-13 leader’

In June 2018, Saenz was charged with additional crimes, according to a release from the DOJ

They revolved around his involvement in the killing of Oscar Acosta, who was beaten with tree limbs and tied up by other gang members. Saenz, the leader of the Brentwood chapter of the so-called ‘Sailors clique,’ was then called and Acosta was loaded into the trunk of a car and driven to an wooded area where he was stabbed and slashed to death with a machete. His body wasn’t recovered for four months. 

Saenz was also involved in the October 2016 murder of Javier Castillo, who the MS-13 members believed to be associated with a rival gang. He was also attacked and killed with a machete. His body wasn’t recovered for a year.  

Three days later, Saenz and several MS-13 members struck again and murdered Dewann Stacks, who they also suspected was in a rival gang. He was killed with a baseball bat and machetes.  

Saenz was charged with a sixth murder in July 2019 – the killing of Esteban Alvarado-Bonilla, who, once again, was suspected of being a rival gang member.  

In November 2019,  Saenz was charged with a seventh murder, that of 29-year-old Michael Johnson. Newsday reported that Johnson may have been wearing a color associated with a rival gang. 

In July 2020, Barr gave Trump a briefing about what ‘Joint Task Force Vulcan,’ a group Barr set up to eradicate MS-13, had accomplished.   

In July 2020, Barr gave Trump a briefing about what 'Joint Task Force Vulcan,' a group Barr set up to eradicate MS-13, had accomplished

In July 2020, Barr gave Trump a briefing about what ‘Joint Task Force Vulcan,’ a group Barr set up to eradicate MS-13, had accomplished

Barr described how MS-13 is unique, explaining that the gang wasn’t driven by commercial interest like the mob. 

‘It’s about the honor of being the most savage, bloody-thirsty person you can be and building up the reputation as a killer,’ Barr said. ‘This is in someway a death cult.’ 

However, he added, MS-13 is involved in human and narcotics trafficking to finance the operation.  

But the basic purpose, Barr said, is ‘violence and terrorizing people.’ 

He then acknowledged recent moves made by the feds to take on MS-13.  

First was to pin terrorism charges on MS-13 leader Armando Eliu Melgar Diaz, who goes by the nickname of ‘blue,’ in a Virginia-based case. 

‘We’re using terrorism, which gives us extra strength,’ Trump explained.

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