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Earlier today, in federal court in Central Islip, Ever Flores, a member of the Sailors Locos Salvatruchas Westside (Sailors) clique of La Mara Salvatrucha, also known as the MS-13, a transnational criminal organization, pleaded guilty to racketeering charges relating to his participation in the murder of Dewann Stacks and a conspiracy to distribute cocaine and marijuana. The proceeding was held before United States Circuit Judge Joseph F. Bianco.
Jacquelyn M. Kasulis, Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, Michael J. Driscoll, Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI), and Stuart Cameron, Acting Commissioner, Suffolk County Police Department (SCPD), announced the guilty plea.
“Today’s guilty plea makes clear that the defendant, an MS-13 gang member who admittedly hunted on residential streets in Long Island in order to kill, actively participated in the butchering and beating death of the victim until he was almost unrecognizable,” stated Acting U.S. Attorney Kasulis. “This Office and the Long Island Gang Task Force have vowed to end these horrific killings and dismantle the MS-13.”
“This case is a grim reminder of just how vicious MS-13 can be,” stated SCPD Acting Commissioner Cameron. “This victim was sought out like prey and killed in an act of savagery illustrating the danger this street gang poses. Today, there is one less murderer and drug dealer to plague the streets of Suffolk County, and I commend the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York and our law enforcement partners for their continued dedication to bringing individuals like Ever Flores to justice.”
According to prior court filings and Flores’s statements during the plea proceeding, on October 13, 2016, Flores and other MS-13 co-conspirators drove around the streets of Central Islip and Brentwood hunting for rival gang members to attack and kill. They located Stacks on American Boulevard, a residential street in Brentwood and, believing him to be a rival gang member, decided to kill him. Flores, wielding a machete, and two other MS-13 members, one armed with a machete and the other a baseball bat, attacked the victim, beating and hacking him to death. The victim sustained severe sharp and blunt force trauma to the face and head, leaving him nearly unrecognizable.
In addition, Flores also pleaded guilty to participating in a drug conspiracy, admitting that between April 2016 and October 2017, he and other members of the Sailors clique conspired to distribute cocaine and marijuana to raise money for the MS-13.
Today’s conviction is the latest in a series of federal prosecutions by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York targeting members of the MS-13, a violent, transnational criminal organization. The MS-13’s leadership is based in El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico, but the gang has thousands of members across the United States, comprised primarily of immigrants from Central America. With numerous branches, or “cliques,” the MS-13 is the most violent criminal organization on Long Island. Since 2003, hundreds of MS-13 members, including dozens of clique leaders, have been convicted on federal felony charges in the Eastern District of New York. A majority of those MS-13 members have been convicted on federal racketeering charges for participating in murders, attempted murders and assaults. Since 2010, this Office has obtained indictments charging MS-13 members with carrying out more than 60 murders in the Eastern District of New York and has convicted dozens of MS-13 leaders and members in connection with those murders. These prosecutions are the product of investigations led by the FBI’s Long Island Gang Task Force, which is comprised of agents and officers of the FBI, SCPD, Nassau County Police Department, Nassau County Sheriff’s Department, Suffolk County Probation Office, Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office, the New York State Police, the Hempstead Police Department, the Rockville Centre Police Department and the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision.
The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Long Island Criminal Division. Assistant United States Attorneys John J. Durham, Paul G. Scotti, Justina L. Geraci and Megan E. Farrell are in charge of the prosecution.
EVER FLORES (also known as “Negro” and “Grone”)
Brentwood, New York
E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 16-CR-403 (S-7)(JFB)
United States Attorney’s Office