Three associates of the MS-13 gang have pleaded guilty to charges in Fairfax, Va., relating to the brutal revenge killing of 15-year-old Damaris Reyes Rivas, the Washington Post reports. The case garnered media coverage both locally and nationally and drew attention to the brutal nature of one of the nation’s most formidable street gangs.
As part of a deal with prosecutors, Cindy Blanco Hernandez, 19, Aldair J. Miranda Carcamo, 18, and Emerson Fugon Lopez, 17, pleaded guilty to a charges including abduction and gang participation. All three are expected to be witnesses in the upcoming trials of three other suspects charged directly with the murder. In total, 10 defendants will stand trial for the crime — none of them are older than 21.
According to the prosecution, Reyes Rivas was taken to a Virginia park by the 10 suspects, where she was beaten and stabbed by the group as revenge for the death of 21-year-old Christian Sosa Rivas — the boyfriend of one of the gang’s female members. Gang members believed Reyes Rivas had lured Sosa Rivas to the location of his eventual murder, which occurred around New Years’ Eve 2016. Reyes Rivas’ body was eventually discovered after it was dumped under a highway overpass on the outskirts of Washington, D.C.
The Post reports that FBI agent Fernando Uribe testified in July that Jose Cerrato, a 17-year-old alleged gang member who is facing a murder charge, filmed and narrated the killing on a cellphone and had intended to send the footage to MS-13 leaders in El Salvador. Whether or not the video ever found its way to El Salvador is not yet known, but Uribe testified that Cerrato was rewarded for his role in the murder with a promotion within the gang.