Three members of the notorious MS-13 gang have been convicted of racketeering and murder by a Boston federal jury.
U.S. Attorney Andrew E. Lelling said 27-year-old Noe Salvador Perez Vasquez, a Salvadoran national; 27-year-old Luis Solis Vasquez, a Salvadoran national; and 39-year-old Hector Enamorado, a Honduran national, were found guilty Monday by a jury for racketeering and knowingly committing murder as a part of a racketeering conspiracy. They are the 41st, 42nd and 43rd defendants to be convicted in an indictment targeting the criminal activities of alleged associates and leaders of the criminal organization.
Perez was also found guilty of intent to distribute cocaine and marijuana.
The murder charge is related to the killing of a 29-year-old male victim in a Chelsea, Massachusetts, apartment complex in 2014. According to trial testimony, Enamorado used Perez's gun to fatally shoot the man three times.
James J. Cipoletta, the attorney for Enamorado, said his client maintains "he is not a member of MS-13, and had nothing to do with the Chelsea murder." He will appeal to the First Circuit Court of Appeals.
Perez is charged with the July 2015 murder of a gang member in Lawrence, Massachusetts, who MS-13 members believed was cooperating with law enforcement. Perez planned the murder and promised to promote other members of the gang for assisting.
All three sentencing hearings are scheduled for July. Attorneys Raymond O'Hara and Jason Benzaken, representing Perez Vasquez, could not be reached for comment. Attorney Ian Gold, representing Solis Vasquez, did not return a phone call for comment.
Defendants face a maximum penalty of life in prison, up to five years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000 for racketeering conspiracy charges. The charge of distributing cocaine carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years and up to life in prison, a minimum of five years of supervised release and a fine of up to $10 million. All three men will be subject to deportation upon completion of their sentences.