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Salvadorans indicted for racketeering

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WASHINGTON, June 5 (UPI) -- A federal grand jury in Maryland Tuesday indicted three members of the MS-13 street gang on racketeering charges.

Two of the three, all Salvadoran nationals, are accused of ordering killings inside the United States from their prison cells in El Salvador.

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The 30-count indictment charges Dany Fredy "Sisco" Ramos Mejia, Saul Antonios "Trece" Turcio Angel and Rigoberto Del Transito "Ski" Mejia Regaldo conspired in a racketeering enterprise in the United States and El Salvador involving murder, robbery, obstruction of justice and witness tampering. All three are in jail in El Salvador.

The alleged crimes began in 2001 and continued through last March, including eight killings in Maryland and one in Virginia, involving firearms, baseball bats, machetes, bottles or knives.

"MS-13 is a criminal organization that has terrorized our nation's neighborhoods and jeopardized community safety for far too long," said Acting Director Michael J. Sullivan of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

"The challenge of gangs and violent crime remain with us, but I am committed to making our neighborhoods safer," U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said in announcing the indictment.

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