Greenbelt, Maryland –A federal grand jury returned a seventh superseding indictment on December 17, 2018, charging nine men in connection with a conspiracy to participate in a racketeering enterprise known as La Mara Salvatrucha, or MS-13.  The seventh superseding indictment adds two new defendants charged with racketeering conspiracy related to their membership in MS-13, and adds four murders as overt acts allegedly committed by the defendants charged in this indictment.

Charged in the seven-count superseding indictment are Junior Noe Alvarado-Requeno, a/k/a “Insolente,” and “Trankilo,” age 22, of Landover, Maryland; Michael Eduardo Contreras, a/k/a “Katra,” and “Insoportable,” age 24, of Silver Spring, Maryland; Luis Fernando Orellana-Estrada, a/k/a “Pinguino,” age 19, of Hyattsville, Maryland; Kevin Alexander Soriana-Hernandez, a/k/a “Brocha,” age 19, of Riverdale, Maryland; Carlos Daniel Cardenas-Banegas, a/k/a “Perrico,” age 20, of Riverdale, Maryland; Wilfredo Cardenas-Banegas, a/k/a “Torro,” age 25, of Riverdale, Maryland; Luis Arnoldo Flores-Reyes, a/k/a “Maloso,” aka “Lobo,” age 37, of Arlington, Virginia; Miguel Angel Corea Diaz, a/k/a “Reaper,” age 36, of Long Branch, New Jersey; and Jairo Arnaldo Jacome, a/k/a “Abuelo,” age 36, of Langley Park, Maryland.

The superseding indictment was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Robert K. Hur; Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski for the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; Assistant Director in Charge Nancy McNamara of the FBI Washington Field Office; Special Agent in Charge Gordon B. Johnson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office; Acting Special Agent in Charge Cardell T. Morant of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Baltimore Field Office; Acting Special Agent in Charge Scott Hoernke of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Washington Field Division; Chief J. Thomas Manger of the Montgomery County Police Department; Chief Henry P. Stawinski III of the Prince George’s County Police Department; Interim Chief Amal Awad of the City of Hyattsville Police Department; Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Aisha Braveboy; and Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy.

The superseding indictment alleges that from prior to 2015 through at least January 2018, the defendants, as members and associates of MS-13, engaged in a racketeering conspiracy that included extortion, drug trafficking, money laundering, murder, conspiracy to commit murder, and robbery.  Jacome was a member and associate of the Langley Park Salvatrucha Clique of MS-13.  All other defendants were members and associates of the Sailors Clique of MS-13. 

Alvarado-Requeno, Contreras, Orellana-Estrada, Soriana-Hernandez, Wilfredo Cardenas-Banegas, Carlos Cardenas-Banegas, and Flores-Reyes were charged in a previous indictment with conspiracy to participate in a racketeering enterprise for their involvement in a variety of violent acts committed by the Sailors Clique of MS-13, including multiple murders.

The new defendants and charges added in the seventh superseding indictment include the following:

First, alleged MS-13 members Corea Diaz and Jacome have been added as defendants, and are now charged with RICO conspiracy in the seventh superseding indictment.

Second, the seventh superseding indictment now references four additional murders as overt acts taken in furtherance of the racketeering conspiracy:

•           Specifically, the indictment charges that in June 2016, Alvarado-Requeno and Contreras planned with and directed other members and associates of MS-13 to search for and murder gang rivals known as “chavalas” in and around Hyattsville, Maryland.  On June 8, 2016, Alvarado-Requeno and Contreras directed lower-ranking members of MS-13 to murder two individuals who were believed to be members of the rival 18th Street gang.  Pursuant to this plan and as directed by Alvarado-Requeno and Contreras, MS-13members and associates stabbed the two victims to death.

•           Alvarado-Requeno, Contreras, Jacome also are now charged in the 2016 murder of a victim in Germantown, Maryland.  On Dec. 4, 2016, Alvarado-Requeno, Contreras, Jacome and other members and associates of MS-13 traveled to Germantown with a machete and other weapons with the purpose of murdering an individual as punishment for his infractions against the gang.  They stabbed the victim to death, but fled the area leaving the victim’s body near a creek.  The next day, Jacome and other members and associates of MS-13 returned to Germantown to bury the body of the victim.

•           Contreras, Alvarado-Requeno, Flores-Reyes, and Corea-Diaz also are now charged in the 2017 murder of a victim in Lynchburg, Virginia.  On March 27, 2017, Contreras, Alvarado-Requeno, Flores-Reyes, and Corea-Diaz arranged for members and associates of the Sailors Clique to travel from Maryland to Lynchburg for the purpose of murdering an individual in the Lynchburg area.  Flores-Reyes provided the vehicle in which the members and associates drove and called them to provide encouragement to murder the victim.  The victim was murdered that same day in Bedford County, Virginia.  On March 27 and March 28, 2017, multiple individuals were arrested in connection with the murder.  Contreras, Alvarado-Requeno, Flores-Reyes, and Corea-Diaz made phone calls on those dates trying to locate the individuals who had traveled to Virginia to commit the murder.  Two of the participants in the murder escaped from Bedford County and were hidden in Maryland by members and associates of the Sailors Clique.

In addition to the new charges in the RICO conspiracy, Alvarado-Requeno, Contreras, Jacome are charged in the superseding indictment with murder in aid of racketeering and conspiracy to commit murder in aid of racketeering in connection with the Dec. 4, 2016 murder.  Alvarado-Requeno is also charged in the superseding indictment with murder in aid of racketeering and conspiracy to commit murder in aid of racketeering in connection with a Gaithersburg, Maryland murder that took place on June 16, 2016.  Jacome is charged with conspiracy to interfere with interstate commerce by extortion.  All defendants are in custody.

According to the superseding indictment, MS-13 is a national and international gang composed primarily of immigrants or descendants from El Salvador.  Branches or “cliques” of MS-13, one of the largest street gangs in the United States, operate throughout Prince George’s County and Montgomery County, Maryland. 

The charges in the indictment are merely allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

U.S. Attorney Robert K. Hur and Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski thanked the FBI Washington and Baltimore Field Offices, HSI Baltimore, the DEA Washington Field Office, the Prince George’s County Police Department, the Montgomery County Police Department, the Prince George’s State’s Attorney’s Office, the Hyattsville Police Department, and the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in this investigation.  Mr. Hur and Mr. Benczkowski commended Assistant U.S. Attorneys William D. Moomau and Catherine K. Dick and Trial Attorney Francesca Liquori of the Criminal Division’s Organized Crime and Gang Section, who are prosecuting this case.

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