The notorious MS-30 gang has grown into an international threat. There are an estimated 10,000 MS-13 gang members nationwide, many of which are here illegally.
Evidently, in the past, it has been easy for these gang members to enter the U.S., especially at the U.S.-Mexico border.
With that in mind, President Donald Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions have pointed to the MS-13 as one of the many arguments why stricter immigration policies need to be implemented.
“Operation Matador,” lead by the Homeland Security Investigations (HSI,) along with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and other government agencies has led to the arrest of 475 MS-30 gang members.
“Operation Matador sends a clear message to violent street gangs that there are consequences for their actions,” said Thomas Homan, ICE Deputy Director said in a statement. “Since this operation began last year, we have seen a decrease in the amount of violent crime directly related to MS-13 and other transnational gangs.”
99 of the 475 arrested arrived as “unaccompanied minors” and 64 of these criminals were even granted Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJ,) a classification that provides minors with Lawful Permanent Resident status despite being unauthorized to enter the U.S.
“According to police, the arrests include an MS-13 member who claimed to have been 12-years-old when he first started killing rival gang members in El Salvador before moving to Long Island and joining gang activities there. He was arrested on unspecified criminal charges and deported,” writes CBS New York. “Other persons arrested included a person wanted by Interpol for killing law enforcement in El Salvador, an MS-13 member arrested in Brentwood who claimed at the age of 13 to have killed three gang members in El Salvador and an 18th Street Gang member armed with a handgun.”
Another program giving illegal immigrants protection is the Unaccompanied Minor Children’s (UAC) program, where unaccompanied minors are resettled across the courtly.
Over half of the arrests have been made in Nassau County in New York, an area of the country especially plagued with MS-30 gang violence. The gang has been responsible for 17 murders in Long Island in the last 17 months.
“Under President Trump’s administration, the UAC program has continued. For example, in Fiscal Year 2018 thus far, nearly 200 unaccompanied minors have been resettled in Suffolk County, along with almost 280 in Queens County, and more than 115 in Nassau County, despite the regions’ issues with the MS-13 gang,” writes Breitbart.
MS-13 gang members are notoriously known for their tattoos and vicious acts of cruelty. Their motto is “mata, viola, controla” or “kill, rape, control.” They aim to commit murders that are personal and because of this the MS-13 has been dubbed “the most dangerous gang in the world.” Surprisingly, drug trafficking isn’t the gang’s focus, instead the MS-13 makes the majority of their profit in sex trafficking and prostitution.
Author’s note: The spike in MS-13 gang crimes is why immigration policies need to be stricter. But “Operation Matador” is off to a great start.