Trump recounted a news story he read recently, in which he said an MS-13 gang member said the gang likes to kill its victims slowly because they enjoy inflicting pain on people.
The island in particular has faced an increase in violence related to the gang – also known as Mara Salvatrucha – in recent months.
“This is causing us concern, where labeling someone as gang affiliated is not enough to make a criminal arrest”, attorney Philip Desgranges said. “But the rest are coming”. “They don’t like shooting people because it’s too quick”.
The speech was laced with violent imagery, with Trump saying MS-13 has rendered the suburb into “blood-stained killing fields”. “They kidnap. They extort”.
Anti-gang activist Sergio Argueta says he doesn’t think this visit will bring about any positive change. “They stomp on their victims”. They beat them with clubs.
“[MS-13 has] transformed peaceful parks and attractive quiet neighborhoods into blood-stained killing fields”.
Suffolk County Police Commissioner Timothy Sini told the New York Times last month there were times when officers couldn’t make criminal arrests, so officers work with federal immigration officials to target known gang members “for violation of civil immigration laws, which is another way to remove risky individuals from our streets”. He’s promised to eradicate the gang in the US through strict enforcement of immigration law.
He also appeared to advocate rougher treatment of people in police custody, speaking dismissively of arresting officers who protect suspects’ heads while putting them in police cars.
“If you see somebody getting ready to throw a tomato, knock the crap out of them, would you?”
He said: “You can take the hand off”, drawing cheers from his audience. “We have a ‘Commander-in-Hate, ‘ not a Commander-In-Chief”, said David Kilmnick, chief executive of the LGBT Network in Woodbury. “I said, ‘Please don’t be too nice, ‘” he said. In April, Sessions visited Long Island and issued a warning to gangs such as MS-13, stating, “We are targeting you”. In his speech, Trump will lay out a plan of action to defeat the group, which was established by immigrants from Central American countries including El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico. The Obama administration’s Treasury Department sanctioned the gang in 2012 as a transnational criminal organization – the first such designation for a street gang. Failure to enforce our immigration laws had predictable results. “You do something wrong, you’re in more jeopardy than they are”.
Today, it is estimated to have some 10,000 members in the United States and be present in 40 states. Investigators said Cuevas had been feuding verbally with gang members.
Trump’s speech coincided with an announcement on Friday that two MS-13 gang members had been arrested in connection with the May murder of a man in Queens. His speech, of course, does not mention the fact that the gang formed in Los Angeles as a result of the systematic disenfranchisement of El Salvadorians fleeing civil war in the ’80s, and flawed USA immigration and deportation policies in the ’90s.
The president spoke in blunt language to describe the brutality of MS-13 gang members, who have murdered 17 people in Long Island since January 16.