12/19/2005

VA.: MS-13 member sentenced to life for killing rival

The Associated Press

ALEXANDRIA, Virginia- A member of the Hispanic street gang MS-13 was sentenced to life in prison for murdering a rival gang member.

Alirio Reyes, 27, of Herndon, Virginia, pleaded guilty in September to murder for his role in the death of 17-year-old Jose Sandoval. He was sentenced on Friday.

Reyes and another MS-13 member, Osmin Alfaro-Fuentes, approached Sandoval and a 16-year-old female on a Herndon street on May 16, 2004 and asked if they were rival gang members. When Sandoval said he was a member of a different gang, Reyes shot both of them, killing Sandoval and seriously injuring the girl.

MS-13, also known as Mara Salvatrucha, was formed in Los Angeles among immigrants from El Salvador. It later spread throughout the U.S. and to Central America.

After the shooting, Reyes and Alfaro-Fuentes fled to Los Angeles, where they were arrested in June by members of the United States Marshals Fugitive Task Force.

Reyes pleaded guilty on the third day of his trial, saying he shot the teens to increase his status in MS-13.

Alfaro-Fuentes, 27, was sentenced earlier this month to life in prison for his role in the murder.

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