Mara Salvatrucha, also known as MS-13, is a Salvadorian street gang that is now an internationally-spread gang. It has a large presence in Central America and several states of the United States, including California, Texas, and New York. It is the fastest-growing gang in the world, along with its rival, the 18th Street gang. Members are easily recognizable by their elaborate Gothic-style tattoos.
MS-13 originated during the Salvadorian civil war of the 1980s.
Despite their extreme brutality, MS-13 gang members strongly fear La Sombra Negra, a paramilitary organization that exists to wipe out gangs like MS-13 and uses extreme torture methods on the gang members.
In the U.S., MS-13 has spread to 22 states, and it has grown by recruiting illegal immigrants. MS-13 has been able to enter the U.S. illegally by having its members claim they are underage. Some members of the mainstream media published articles defending the gang.
- O'Reilly, Andrew (October 24, 2017). MS-13 spreading across US as AG Sessions vows to take down gang. Fox News. Retrieved October 24, 2017.
- Binder, John (May 17, 2018). 11 Animalistic Crimes Committed Against Americans by MS-13 Gang. Breitbart News. Retrieved May 17, 2018.
- O'Reilly, Andrew (August 2, 2017). MS-13 doesn't fear Trump, rival gangs or the police - but they are terrified of La Sombra Negra. Fox News. Retrieved August 2, 2017.
- Multiple references:
- Bedard, Paul (February 21, 2018). MS-13 spreads to 22 states, fed by 300,000 illegals, DACA recipients, tied to 207 murders. Washington Examiner. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
- Dinan, Stephen (February 21, 2018). MS-13 gang members gaining numbers by recruiting illegal immigrants: Report. The Washington Times. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
- Dinan, Stephen (April 26, 2018). MS-13 members game U.S. immigration system by claiming they’re underage. The Washington Times. Retrieved April 28, 2018.
- Starr, Penny (August 11, 2018). Left-Wing Media Defend MS-13 Gangs: ‘American Problem,’ Hurting Other Immigrants. Breitbart News. Retrieved August 11, 2018.
- What is MS-13, the violent gang Trump vowed to target? Fox News. July 28, 2017.