MS-13 Street Gang Leader Sentenced to Thirty-five Years’ Imprisonment for Murder
Earlier today, Wilver R. Lopez, also known as “Conde,” a leader in the La Mara Salvatrucha (“MS-13”) street gang on Long Island, was sentenced to 35 years’ imprisonment for the September 17, 2004, murder of 24-year-old fellow MS-13 member Genaro Venegas in Bethpage, New York. The sentence was imposed pursuant to Lopez’s August 10, 2010, guilty plea. The proceeding was held before Senior United States District Judge Leonard D. Wexler at the United States Courthouse in Central Islip, New York.
According to Lopez’s plea allocution and documents previously filed in the case, after learning that Venegas had provided state law enforcement authorities with information relating to an April 2004, murder carried out by an MS-13 member in Suffolk County, Lopez and three other Long Island MS-13 members lured Venegas to a wooded area where they repeatedly shot and stabbed him. At the time of the Venegas murder, Lopez was the leader of the MS-13’s Long Island Leeward Clique. Lopez’s co-conspirators in the Venegas homicide have all pleaded guilty to murder charges and are awaiting sentencing.
“Eliminating gang violence in our communities is one of our highest priorities, and we will continue to utilize all necessary resources in this effort,” stated United States Attorney Loretta E. Lynch. Ms. Lynch praised the work of the FBI Long Island Gang Task Force, which investigated the case.
FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Janice K. Fedarcyk stated, “The lengthy sentence imposed today reflects the ruthlessness of Lopez’s crime - a murder calculated as retribution for cooperation with the police. The FBI remains steadfast in its determination to reduce gang violence, and that effort is spearheaded on Long Island by the Long Island Gang Task Force.”
The MS-13 is a violent international street gang comprised primarily of immigrants from El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala. With several chapters, which members refer to as “cliques,” MS-13 is the largest street gang on Long Island. The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York has obtained convictions against more than 100 MS-13 members, including ten clique leaders, for felony offenses, including racketeering, murder, assault, firearm possession, and narcotics trafficking.
The government’s case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Richard P. Donoghue, James McGovern, Nicole Boeckmann, Raymond Tierney, and John Durham.
WILVER R. LOPEZ, also known as “Conde”
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