MS-13 Member Pleads Guilty to RICO Conspiracy Involving Murder
Defendant admits responsibility for the murder of a 15-year-old in East Boston
BOSTON – An MS-13 member pleaded guilty on Friday, March 30, 2018, in federal court in Boston to racketeering conspiracy involving the murder of a 15-year-old boy in East Boston.
Carlos Melara, a/k/a “Chuchito,” a/k/a “Criminal,” 21, a Salvadoran national, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to conduct enterprise affairs through a pattern of racketeering activity, more commonly referred to as RICO conspiracy. U.S. District Court Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV scheduled sentencing for July 30, 2018.
After a multi-year investigation, Melara was one of 61 people named in a fifth superseding indictment targeting the criminal activities of alleged leaders, members, and associates of MS-13. During the investigation, Melara was identified as a member of MS-13’s Everett Locos Salvatrucha (ELS) clique.
On Sept. 7, 2015, Melara, Henry Josue Parada Martinez, a/k/a “Street Danger,” and another MS-13 member participated in the murder of a teenage boy on Constitution Beach in East Boston. The defendants targeted the victim in a “catfishing” scheme in which they used a fake Facebook account to trick the victim into thinking he was talking to a girl. In reality, the Facebook account was being controlled by MS-13 members to lure in suspected gang rivals so that the gang could murder them.
On the day of the murder, Melara picked up the victim on a scooter pretending to be a friend of the girl that the victim was planning to meet for a date. Melara drove the victim to Constitution Beach, where the other MS-13 members were waiting to kill him. Melara and the other MS-13 members took turns attacking and stabbing the victim to death. Melara was promoted to “homeboy” or a full member of MS-13, as a reward for his participation in the murder.
At the hearing, the Court accepted the defendant’s guilty plea, but deferred acceptance of the plea agreement until the July 30, 2018, sentencing hearing. Under the terms of the proposed plea agreement, Melara will be sentenced to between 30 and 40 years in prison. He will also be subject to deportation upon the completion of his sentence.
On Nov. 29, 2017, Parada Martinez pleaded guilty to RICO conspiracy; he is awaiting sentencing. Melara is the 40th defendant to plead guilty or to be found guilty after trial.
United States Attorney Andrew E. Lelling; Harold H. Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; Michael Shea, Acting Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; Colonel Kerry A. Gilpin, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police; Commissioner Thomas Turco of the Massachusetts Department of Corrections; Essex County Sheriff Kevin F. Coppinger; Suffolk County Sheriff Steven W. Thompkins; Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel F. Conley; Middlesex County District Attorney Marian T. Ryan; Essex County District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett; Boston Police Commissioner William Evans; Chelsea Police Chief Brian A. Kyes; Everett Police Chief Steven A. Mazzie; Lynn Police Chief Michael Mageary; Revere Police Chief James Guido; and Somerville Police Chief David Fallon made the announcement.
The details contained in the charging documents are allegations. All remaining defendants are presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.