MS-13 Gang Leader Sentenced to Life in Prison for Racketeering Charges Including the Murder of 16-Year-Old Victim in Alley Pond Park in Queens
Earlier today, at the federal courthouse in Brooklyn, Brendan Hunt was sentenced by United States District Judge Pamela K. Chen to 19 months’ imprisonment for threatening to assault and murder members of the United States Congress to impede, interfere with and intimidate those members and to retaliate against them on account of their performance of their official duties. Hunt was convicted of that charge after a jury trial in April 2021, which was the first trial to address the consequences of the January 6, 2021 assault on the Capitol.
Breon Peace, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and Michael J. Driscoll, Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI), announced the sentence.
“We will not tolerate threats to members of the United States Congress or calls to overthrow our democratically elected government,” stated United States Attorney Peace. “Not only will we investigate and vigorously prosecute these crimes, but today’s sentence sends a clear message that those who seek to harm our representatives and bring chaos to our democracy will be punished.”
On January 8, 2021, two days after the violent attack on the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., Hunt posted a video titled “KILL YOUR SENATORS” that included the summary “Slaughter them all,” to BitChute, an Internet-based video sharing site. In the video, Hunt made dangerous additional threats, exhorting his viewers to violence and telling them that “[w]e need to go back to the U.S. Capitol when all of the Senators and a lot of the Representatives are back there, and this time we have to show up with our guns. And we need to slaughter these m-----f-----s.” Hunt also advocated for the violent overthrow of the federal government, claiming that “our government at this point is basically a handful of traitors . . . so what you need to do is take up arms, get to D.C., probably the inauguration . . . so called inauguration of this m-----f-----g communist Joe Biden . . . [T]hat’s probably the best time to do this, get your guns, show up to D.C., and literally just spray these m-----f-----s . . . put some bullets in their f------g heads.” Hunt stated, “If anybody has a gun, give me it, I’ll go there myself and shoot them and kill them . . . [W]e have to take out these Senators and then replace them with actual patriots. This is a [Zionist Occupied Government].”
On January 9, 2021, the defendant posted another video in which he stated “[t]hose 100 Senators should really be afraid about going into public now” and that “We have the first amendment, that’s still around, remember? And we have the second as well. There are really only a hundred of these weakling Senators. They are mass murdering psychopaths who are intent on our destruction, and they form an illegitimate government. Every single one of them just needs to go.”
The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s National Security and Cybercrime Section. Assistant United States Attorneys David K. Kessler, Ian C. Richardson and Francisco J. Navarro are in charge of the prosecution.
E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 21-CR-086 (PKC)
United States Attorney’s Office