MS-13 gang leader sentenced to death for 4 murders

MS-13 gang leader sentenced to death for 4 murders

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by GLENN COUNTS / NewsChannel 36
E-mail Glenn: GCounts@WCNC.com

Bio | Email | Follow: @GCountsWCNC

WCNC.com

Posted on July 27, 2010 at 5:59 PM

CHARLOTTE, N.C. --  Alejandro Umana flashed gang signs on his way inside the federal courthouse for sentencing Tuesday morning.


Umana, an MS-13 gang member, was convicted on multiple counts of murder of this year.


“He was a leader, he was sent in by the leadership in El Salvador to come to Charlotte and surrounding areas to help organize the gang,” says Sam Nazzaro, a prosecutor with the U.S. Department of Justice


In April, Umana was convicted of murdering two brothers in a Guilford County restaurant.  That same jury convicted him of two other murders in Los Angeles, California.  The jury recommended the death penalty.


“This is the harshest penalty that we have in the criminal justice system,” says Jill Rose, an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Charlotte. “Certainly we know the MS-13 members were watching this closely, hopefully it sends the message it needs to send.”


When Umana walked into court he didn’t show any remorse.  He actually smiled and said “hola” to the crowd, which means “hello” in Spanish.


Prosecutors hope the message is that no one in the gang, including the leadership, is untouchable.  But in this culture, experts say that Umana’s street cred just went up with the conviction.


Umana’s attorneys declined to comment as they left the courthouse but they indicated that they will appeal.

The 25-year-old becomes the first MS-13 gang member in the country to receive a federal death sentence.


Even during sentencing he continued his defiance with a statement to the court.
He said, “This is the destiny God has given me, as for the rest, la mara salvtrucha” which means MS-13.

    

  

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