Treasury Department, HSI sanction significant members of MS-13 gang

Washington, DC - The U.S. Department of the Treasury, with the assistance of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), designated six members of the notorious El Salvadoran gang Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) Wednesday.

The designation is pursuant to Executive Order 13581, which targets transnational criminal organizations (TCOs) and their supporters. This executive order is a key part of the National Strategy to Combat Transnational Organized Crime.

These actions are part of the Treasury Department's ongoing efforts to target the leadership of global criminal organizations, including MS-13, which threaten innocent people and legitimate business around the world, including in the United States.

In October 2012, MS-13 became the first transnational criminal street gang to be designated by Treasury as a TCO. MS-13 has been involved in serious criminal activity, in the United States and around the world, including human smuggling, sex trafficking, drug trafficking, kidnapping, murder, assassinations, racketeering, blackmail, extortion and immigration offenses.

"Today's designation of six MS-13 leaders is the result of Homeland Security Investigation's National Gang Unit and OFAC's joint partnership to further strike at the financial heart of one of the most dangerous transnational criminal gangs in the world today," said ICE Director John Morton.

"This powerful tool will provide HSI and its local, state, federal and international law enforcement partners to further disrupt MS-13 financial networks and violent operations," Morton continued. "History has proven that we can successfully take down organized crime groups when we combine sophisticated investigative techniques with tough street level enforcement, cutting off cash flows, contraband and collaborators to ensure they no longer find safe haven in our communities."

"MS-13 is an extremely violent and dangerous gang responsible for a multitude of crimes that directly threaten the welfare and security of U.S. citizens, as well as peoples throughout Central America," said Adam Szubin, director of the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control. "We will continue to target the leadership and financial networks supporting MS-13, and work with our law enforcement partners from across the United States and around the world to disrupt their criminal activities."

The designations of six individuals working for, or on behalf of, MS-13 are designed to further disrupt the activities of MS-13 and to protect the U.S. and international financial systems from abuse.

As active members and leaders, these individuals are heavily involved in directing and participating in illicit activity, such as drug trafficking, money laundering, extortion, and murder.

Borromeo Enrique Henriquez Solorzano, 34, incarcerated in El Salvador, is widely regarded as the Central American leader of the group and frequently acts as the spokesperson for the MS-13 gang in El Salvador.

Several other MS-13 leaders — including Marvin Geovanny Monterrosa Larios, 39; Moises Humberto Rivera Luna, 44; and Saul Antonio Turcios Angel, 35 — have been indicted in the United States for racketeering, murder and other violent crimes. Moris Alexander Bercian Manchon, 28, has been involved in narcotics trafficking operations on behalf of the organization. Jose Misael Cisneros Rodriguez, 36, is both an MS-13 crime boss and a narcotics trafficker.

MS-13 consists of more than 30,000 members and operates in at least five countries, including the United States. It is one of the most dangerous criminal gangs in the world today. MS-13 promotes its illicit interests through murder, kidnapping, blackmail, extortion and assassination, including carrying out numerous murders within the United States.

U.S. persons and businesses are generally prohibited from engaging in any transactions with the individuals designated today, and any assets of those designees subject to U.S. jurisdiction are frozen.

Identifiers:
Name: Moris Alexander Bercian Manchon, aka El Barney
Date of Birth: Oct. 30, 1984
Place of Birth: San Salvador, El Salvador
Nationality: Salvadoran

Name: Jose Misael Cisneros Rodriguez, aka Jose Misal Cisneros, aka Medio Millon, aka Half Million
Date of Birth: Oct. 2, 1976
Place of Birth: Agua Caliente, Chalatenango, El Salvador
Nationality: Salvadoran

Name: Marvin Geovanny Monterrosa-Larios, aka Marvin Jeovanny Monterrosa-Larios, aka Enano
Date of Birth: May 21, 1974
Place of Birth: San Miguel, San Miguel, El Salvador
Nationality: Salvadoran

Name: Moises Humberto Rivera-Luna, aka Santos, aka Viejo Santos
Date of Birth: May 23, 196
Place of Birth: San Salvador, El Salvador
Nationality: Salvadoran

Name: Saul Antonio Turcios Angel, aka El Trece, aka Shayboys
Date of Birth: May 17, 197
Place of Birth: Zaragoza, La Libertad, El Salvador
Nationality: Salvadoran

Name: Borromeo Enrique Henriquez Solorzano, aka Racson Mario Rivera Arias, aka El Diablo Pequeno, aka El Diablo, aka El Diablito, aka El Diablito De Hollywood
Date of Birth: July 27, 1978
Place of Birth: San Salvador, El Salvador
Nationality: Salvadoran

The HSI National Gang Unit is the lead law enforcement agency under this MS-13 enforcement effort dubbed "Operation Barbed Wire." The National Gang Unit removes gang members from local neighborhoods and, when appropriate, from the United States. Their goal is to deter, disrupt and dismantle gang operations by tracing and seizing cash, weapons and other assets derived from criminal activities.

In 2005, HSI initiated Operation Community Shield, an international law enforcement initiative to enhance U.S. public safety. Operation Community Shield partners with existing federal, state and local anti-gang efforts to identify violent street gangs and develop intelligence on gang members and associates, gang criminal activities and international movements; to arrest, prosecute, imprison and/or deport transnational gang members; and to suppress violence and prosecute criminal enterprises.

Since 2006, HSI has arrested 4,249 MS-13 gang members and, partnering with the U.S. Department of Justice, has successfully brought to indictment numerous MS-13 racketeering investigations in Washington, Virginia, New York, San Francisco, Houston and Atlanta.

Additional information