Police in Central Islip, New York, are seeking to determine whether the violent narcoterrorist organization known as MS-13 is responsible for the brutal murder of four young men in a Long Island park. The victims’ bodies were found in a wooded area within Recreation Village Town Park at approximately 8 p.m. on Wednesday. They were discovered just a few hundred feet south of the soccer fields, said Suffolk Police Commissioner Timothy Sini.
 
The bodies were already in a state of decomposition. At a Thursday press conference, Sini said, “There’s no question MS-13 still exists in Suffolk County.” Sini added, “This is a long-term war and make no mistake about it – it’s a war. It’s all hands on deck until we solve these murders.”
 
Sini declined to provide a timeframe for the murders. “They all suffered from significant trauma throughout their body. It appears they were killed with a sharp or edged instrument,” Sini said. “We will confirm the manner in which they were killed is consistent with the modus operandi of MS-13. We are clearly looking into that possibility although we have not ruled out other possibilities at this point.”
 
Two of the men were 18 years old and the others were 16 and 20, said Sini. 
 
Police confirmed on Thursday that George Tigre, 18, and Justin Llivicura, 17, were among the dead. George’s brother, William, confirmed to the New York Post that the victim was with a friend who belongs to MS-13. That friend, Alex Ruiz, is missing. William said that Ruiz called him to say that he witnessed George’s death. 
 
One of the dead is feared to be William Benitez, 21, who has been missing for two days. He has a four-year-old daughter. 
 
In September 2016, the bodies of two 16-year-old girls were found dead nearby under similar circumstances. Ten illegal immigrants with ties to MS-13 gang were arrested last month and charged with murder. This led to the discovery of the skeletons of three teenagers who were also murdered by the gang. 
 
One of the accused is Edwin Antonio “Strong” Amaya-Sanchez. He was deported in 2016 but returned illegally four years later.
 
Gang violence in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala has generated an outflow of migrants, some of whom belong to the violent MS-13. The narcoterrorist organization has chapters all over the U.S. and has affiliates in Spain. 


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Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat and the editor of Spero News.

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