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By Matthew Dolan and Matthew Dolan,Sun reporter | September 27, 2006
GREENBELT -- Mata, viola, controla. The Spanish words for "murder," "rape" and "control" are the battle cry for La Mara Salvatrucha, a violent street gang known as MS-13 and responsible for a recent wave of attacks across Southern Maryland, according to federal prosecutors. The racketeering conspiracy trial against two alleged MS-13 members - Edgar Alberto Ayala, known as "Pony," and Oscar Ramos Velasquez, known as "Casper" - started yesterday with allegations that the men participated in a well-oiled criminal organization responsible for at least six homicides and five attempted killings.
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NEWS
May 23, 2014
The United States grants asylum protection to immigrants of special humanitarian concern who were persecuted in their home countries because of their membership in a particular group and who aren't barred from eligibility because of some past crime or potential danger. We typically think of asylum recipients as being refugees forced to flee religious, ethnic or political torment. But what about former gang members? A 33-year-old Baltimore County man who entered the country illegally from El Salvador in 2000 is seeking asylum as a defense against deportation.
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NEWS
By Matthew Dolan and Matthew Dolan,SUN STAFF | September 6, 2005
Justice Department officials have approved funding of a new federal prosecutor to exclusively handle gang-related prosecutions inside Maryland's U.S. attorney's office. The move comes after a sweeping indictment last month against 19 suspected members of the Hispanic gang MS-13 who were arrested on federal racketeering charges that include a string of homicides and attempted killings in Montgomery and Prince George's counties. U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein, who took office this summer, said he told Justice Department officials that the state had an urgent need to beef up its prosecutorial resources to focus on gangs in suburban Washington and on gun-related crime in the Baltimore region.
NEWS
By Scott Calvert and Scott Calvert,scott.calvert@baltsun.com | September 27, 2009
The 12-year-old boy's harrowing story tumbled out: Tormented by a gang in his native El Salvador. Sent by his terrified mother to sneak into the United States in search of safety. Nabbed by Border Patrol agents in Texas. Told he'd have to go back home, whatever the consequences. Santos Maldonado-Canales badly wanted to stay, and now, sitting in a plush Baltimore law firm in August 2008, his hopes rested with an earnest young lawyer. At 27, Azim Chowdhury was two years out of law school and knew nothing about immigration law. A partner at the Duane Morris firm had given him the case as part of its mission to offer free representation.
NEWS
By JOHN-JOHN WILLIAMS IV and JOHN-JOHN WILLIAMS IV,SUN REPORTER | January 1, 2006
Sarah Lippa is certain that her 14-year-old son, Seth, is not in a gang, but she still wants to be aware of the realities of gangs - even in affluent Howard County. That's why the Elkridge mother and about 50 others attended a recent gang prevention presentation and learned that some of the same gang problems found in neighboring counties exist in their own backyard. Parents "really need to be more on top of what their kids are doing," said presenter Frank Clark, gang intervention specialist with the Maryland Department of Juvenile Services.
NEWS
By Matthew Dolan and Matthew Dolan,Sun reporter | November 15, 2006
A federal jury convicted two gang members, including a Baltimore man, of participating in a violent street organization responsible for more than six murders and multiple assaults in Southern Maryland. Jurors had been deliberating on and off since Nov. 3 to decide the fates of Edgar Alberto Ayala, 29, of Suitland and Oscar Ramos Velasquez, 21, of Baltimore. Late yesterday afternoon, jurors announced a verdict, finding both men guilty of conspiracy to participate in a racketeering enterprise in violation of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations law and conspiracy to commit assaults with a deadly weapon to keep their footholds in a gang known as MS-13.
NEWS
By Scott Calvert and Scott Calvert,scott.calvert@baltsun.com | September 27, 2009
The 12-year-old boy's harrowing story tumbled out: Tormented by a gang in his native El Salvador. Sent by his terrified mother to sneak into the United States in search of safety. Nabbed by Border Patrol agents in Texas. Told he'd have to go back home, whatever the consequences. Santos Maldonado-Canales badly wanted to stay, and now, sitting in a plush Baltimore law firm in August 2008, his hopes rested with an earnest young lawyer. At 27, Azim Chowdhury was two years out of law school and knew nothing about immigration law. A partner at the Duane Morris firm had given him the case as part of its mission to offer free representation.
NEWS
May 23, 2014
The United States grants asylum protection to immigrants of special humanitarian concern who were persecuted in their home countries because of their membership in a particular group and who aren't barred from eligibility because of some past crime or potential danger. We typically think of asylum recipients as being refugees forced to flee religious, ethnic or political torment. But what about former gang members? A 33-year-old Baltimore County man who entered the country illegally from El Salvador in 2000 is seeking asylum as a defense against deportation.
NEWS
By MATTHEW DOLAN and MATTHEW DOLAN,SUN REPORTER | June 2, 2006
MS-13, the target of a major federal indictment in Maryland last summer, isn't the state's biggest gang problem. The Bloods are. That is the conclusion reached by the state's leading gang investigators, who presented their latest findings yesterday at a summit in Columbia of 300 law enforcement officers, political leaders and educators. MS-13, also known as Mara Salvatrucha, originated in Los Angeles among refugees from El Salvador and received national attention in recent years for its rapid spread and violence.
NEWS
By Matthew Dolan and Matthew Dolan,SUN STAFF | March 18, 2005
The man who may have sparked the firebombing of a North Baltimore community activist's home is the reputed leader of a local Bloods gang, according to court papers filed this week. Documents filed by police detail how Terrance A. Smith, who is being held on a separate murder charge, allegedly made it known that he "wanted that [expletive] dead," referring to Harwood Community Association President Edna McAbier. According to court papers, Smith made that statement in his home in front of Brian J. Harrison, 17, of Baltimore.
NEWS
By Matthew Dolan and Matthew Dolan,Sun Reporter | June 6, 2007
The beating death of a teenager found in Howard County and the armed holdup of a Reisterstown grocer were carried out by members of MS-13, a violent street gang whose leaders gave orders from inside a prison in El Salvador, according to a federal racketeering indictment unveiled yesterday. Officially known as Mara Salvatrucha, MS-13 has long had a prominent and violent foothold in the Washington suburbs. The 30-count indictment makes it clear that the gang's activity has spread throughout the Baltimore region, and law enforcement experts say it has expanded to far-flung corners of the state.
NEWS
By Matthew Dolan and Matthew Dolan,Sun reporter | November 15, 2006
A federal jury convicted two gang members, including a Baltimore man, of participating in a violent street organization responsible for more than six murders and multiple assaults in Southern Maryland. Jurors had been deliberating on and off since Nov. 3 to decide the fates of Edgar Alberto Ayala, 29, of Suitland and Oscar Ramos Velasquez, 21, of Baltimore. Late yesterday afternoon, jurors announced a verdict, finding both men guilty of conspiracy to participate in a racketeering enterprise in violation of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations law and conspiracy to commit assaults with a deadly weapon to keep their footholds in a gang known as MS-13.
NEWS
By Matthew Dolan and Matthew Dolan,Sun reporter | September 27, 2006
GREENBELT -- Mata, viola, controla. The Spanish words for "murder," "rape" and "control" are the battle cry for La Mara Salvatrucha, a violent street gang known as MS-13 and responsible for a recent wave of attacks across Southern Maryland, according to federal prosecutors. The racketeering conspiracy trial against two alleged MS-13 members - Edgar Alberto Ayala, known as "Pony," and Oscar Ramos Velasquez, known as "Casper" - started yesterday with allegations that the men participated in a well-oiled criminal organization responsible for at least six homicides and five attempted killings.
NEWS
By MATTHEW DOLAN and MATTHEW DOLAN,SUN REPORTER | June 2, 2006
MS-13, the target of a major federal indictment in Maryland last summer, isn't the state's biggest gang problem. The Bloods are. That is the conclusion reached by the state's leading gang investigators, who presented their latest findings yesterday at a summit in Columbia of 300 law enforcement officers, political leaders and educators. MS-13, also known as Mara Salvatrucha, originated in Los Angeles among refugees from El Salvador and received national attention in recent years for its rapid spread and violence.
NEWS
By JOHN-JOHN WILLIAMS IV and JOHN-JOHN WILLIAMS IV,SUN REPORTER | January 1, 2006
Sarah Lippa is certain that her 14-year-old son, Seth, is not in a gang, but she still wants to be aware of the realities of gangs - even in affluent Howard County. That's why the Elkridge mother and about 50 others attended a recent gang prevention presentation and learned that some of the same gang problems found in neighboring counties exist in their own backyard. Parents "really need to be more on top of what their kids are doing," said presenter Frank Clark, gang intervention specialist with the Maryland Department of Juvenile Services.
NEWS
By Matthew Dolan and Matthew Dolan,SUN STAFF | September 6, 2005
Justice Department officials have approved funding of a new federal prosecutor to exclusively handle gang-related prosecutions inside Maryland's U.S. attorney's office. The move comes after a sweeping indictment last month against 19 suspected members of the Hispanic gang MS-13 who were arrested on federal racketeering charges that include a string of homicides and attempted killings in Montgomery and Prince George's counties. U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein, who took office this summer, said he told Justice Department officials that the state had an urgent need to beef up its prosecutorial resources to focus on gangs in suburban Washington and on gun-related crime in the Baltimore region.
NEWS
By Matthew Dolan and Matthew Dolan,SUN STAFF | March 15, 2005
More than 100 alleged members of a violent Central American street gang have been arrested in a nationwide sweep, including three men in Maryland, authorities said yesterday. Federal agents charged 103 members of the Mara Salvatrucha, or MS-13, gang with a range of criminal and immigration offenses. The arrests took place in the New York; Washington; Los Angeles; Baltimore; Newark, N.J.; Miami and Dallas metropolitan areas over the past several weeks. Officials said MS-13 is one of the largest and most violent street gangs in the United States, and the majority of its members are in the country illegally.
NEWS
By Matthew Dolan and Matthew Dolan,SUN STAFF | March 18, 2005
The man who may have sparked the firebombing of a North Baltimore community activist's home is the reputed leader of a local Bloods gang, according to court papers filed this week. Documents filed by police detail how Terrance A. Smith, who is being held on a separate murder charge, allegedly made it known that he "wanted that [expletive] dead," referring to Harwood Community Association President Edna McAbier. According to court papers, Smith made that statement in his home in front of Brian J. Harrison, 17, of Baltimore.
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