You are here

Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Four Alleged MS-13 Gang Members Charged In Connection With Murder

LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Four alleged MS-13 gang members were charged late Tuesday in connection with the kidnapping and murder of a rival gang member whose body was found on federal property in southern Nevada.

United States Attorney Dayle Elieson of the District of Nevada, Special Agent in Charge Aaron C. Rouse of the FBI’s Las Vegas Division, and Special Agent in Charge Joseph Macias for Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Los Angeles made the announcement.

Josue Diaz-Orellana, 22, Luis Reyes-Castillo, a/k/a “Molesto,” 24, David Perez-Manchame, a/k/a “Herbi” and “Walter Melendez,” 19, and Miguel Torres-Escobar, 20, all El Salvadoran nationals, are charged with assault with intent to commit murder, kidnapping, and discharging a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence. The defendants are illegally in the United States and are in federal custody. Reyes-Castillo, Perez-Manchame, and Torres-Escobar are scheduled to make their initial appearance this afternoon at the federal courthouse in Las Vegas before U.S. District Magistrate Judge Cam Ferenbach. A date for Diaz-Orellana has not yet been set.

MS-13 is an identified transnational organized crime group. MS-13, which is short for “La Mara Salvatrucha,” is a gang composed primarily of immigrants or descendants of immigrants from El Salvador. In the United States, MS-13 has been functioning since at least the 1980s.

According to allegations contained in the complaint, on January 21, 2018, Diaz-Orellana, Reyes-Castillo, Perez-Manchame, and Torres-Escobar, kidnapped and murdered Arquimidez Sandavol-Martinez. His body was discovered on February 2, on federal property on East Lake Mead Boulevard, near mile marker 12, in rural Clark County, Nevada. Examination of the crime scene indicated that Sandoval-Martinez had been bound and had made some effort to escape his captors before being shot and stabbed to death. Fired 9mm cartridge cases with “Blazer” and “FC” head-stamp markings on them were located within the crime scene.

During the course of the investigation, law enforcement learned that Sandoval-Martinez was last seen on January 21, at Club 2100, located at 2100 Fremont Street. Investigators obtained cell phone records that indicated Diaz-Orellana’s phone used cell towers near the club, heading eastbound along Lake Mead Boulevard, and in the area where Sandavol-Martinez’s body was found. On March 2, law enforcement stopped Diaz-Orellana who was in a vehicle with Reyes-Castillo, Perez-Manchame, and Torres-Escobar. A large butcher knife, a baseball hat with an apparent bloodstain on it, and three 9mm handguns were recovered in the vehicle.

The maximum statutory penalty is 20 years of imprisonment for the assault charge and life imprisonment for both the kidnapping and the discharging of a firearm count.

A criminal complaint merely contains allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

The case is a joint investigation by the FBI, HSI, and the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police with the assistance of the DEA. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Phillip N. Smith, Jr. and Frank J. Coumou are prosecuting the case.

###

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Component(s): 
Updated March 28, 2018