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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Massachusetts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, March 30, 2018

Two MS-13 Members Plead Guilty to RICO Conspiracy

One pleaded guilty on first day of trial

BOSTON – Two members of MS-13 have pleaded guilty in federal court in Boston.  They are the 38th and 39th defendants, respectively, to be convicted in a 61 defendant case.  

Edgar Pleitez, a/k/a “Cadejo,” 28, pleaded guilty yesterday to conspiracy to conduct enterprise affairs through a pattern of racketeering activity, more commonly referred to as RICO conspiracy, and conspiracy to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin. U.S. District Court Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV scheduled sentencing for July 10, 2018.

German Hernandez Escobar, a/k/a “Terible,” 30, a Salvadoran national, pleaded guilty on Tuesday, March 27 – the day he was scheduled to stand trial – to RICO conspiracy and conspiracy to distribute marijuana. According to the terms of the plea agreement, the parties will jointly recommend that the Court impose a sentence of 23 years in prison. Judge Saylor scheduled sentencing for June 20, 2018.

According to court documents, Hernandez Escobar was a leader of MS-13’s Everett Loco Salvatrucha (ELS) clique. Several ELS clique members have pleaded guilty to participating in murders carried out on behalf of MS-13, including a July 5, 2015, murder of a 15-year-old in Lawrence. Hernandez Escobar also conspired with other MS-13 members to sell marijuana as a means of raising funds to promote the ELS clique’s criminal activities, including purchasing firearms. Pleitez, who was a homeboy, or full member of MS-13’s East Boston Loco Salvatrucha (EBLS) clique, conspired with other MS-13 members to distribute heroin.

After a three-year investigation, Pleitez and Hernandez Escobar were two of 61 defendants named in a superseding indictment targeting the criminal activities of alleged leaders, members, and associates of MS-13 in Massachusetts. 

The charge of RICO conspiracy provides for a sentence of no greater than 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of $250,000. The charge of conspiracy to distribute marijuana provides for a sentence of no greater than five years in prison, a minimum of two years of supervised release, and a fine of no greater than $250,000. The charge of conspiracy to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin provides for a mandatory minimum sentence of five years and no greater than 40 years in prison, a minimum of four years of supervised release, and a fine of up to $5 million. Hernandez Escobar will be subject to deportation upon completion of his sentence. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

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.

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Component(s): 
Updated March 30, 2018