The final sentence came down for 22 MS-13 gang members, including two Gainesville men, last week in U.S. District Court.
The gang members, who hail predominantly from El Salvador and other Central American countries, faced charges related to murder and armed robbery.
“MS-13 is a ruthless street gang that used violence to spread fear through Gwinnett, DeKalb and Fulton Counties,” said Acting U.S. Attorney John Horn in a news release. “The 8-year federal investigation identified and convicted the local leadership of the gang and dismantled the membership of a brutal and merciless criminal enterprise in the Atlanta region. While the gang preyed mostly on other rival gang members, this case demonstrates the tragic violence that harmed innocent citizens when the gang’s activities spilled out into the community.”
Gwinnett and DeKalb counties were the main area for the gang since at least 2005, according to the Department of Justice.
Omar Cubillos, also known as Pancho, 30, of Gainesville pleaded guilty to RICO conspiracy involving murder and a firearms offense. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison on June 15.
An attempt to reach Cubillos’ attorney Akil Secret was unsuccessful.
Joseph Ivan Dias, also known as Travieso, 27, of Gainesville, pleaded guilty to Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act conspiracy and was sentenced to 14 years in prison. Dias’ attorney Jeffrey Manciagli declined to comment on Dias’ behalf.
According to the Department of Justice, MS-13 members killed a fellow member believed to be working with the police. The indictment also included allegations of violence against rival gang members beginning in 2006.
The prosecution of the 22 gang members required three trials and involved work from Gwinnett and DeKalb county law enforcement, as well as the police departments of Chamblee and Norcross.