“Murder, violent assaults and drug trafficking among charges against alleged MS-13 members,” read the Fresno Bee headline last week. The story got little attention at the national level, despite the gravity and scope of the crimes. According to Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims, the investigation began with 14 homicides in the town of Mendota and in Fresno County between 2015 and 2017.
“The homicides are extremely violent in nature,” Mims said in the press conference. “Most as a result of hacking injuries” and knife attacks. Police confiscated seven guns, 57 knives, 10 machetes, and 270 rounds of ammunition. The investigation eventually covered at least 30 homicides in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Houston and New York City.
“The investigation uncovered a wide range of criminal activity, including murder, violent assaults and drug trafficking by MS-13 cells operating in and around Mendota and Los Angeles,” U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott told reporters.
“MS-13 members were using the remote area of our county as an extension of their larger operation in Los Angeles,” Fresno County District Attorney Lisa Smittcamp said, “and created a home base to continue to operate their unlawful activities while ingraining themselves in our community.” A full 25 members of the MS-13 gang, ages 18 to 31, face charges for murder, violent assaults and drug trafficking, but it wasn’t just a local or California issue.
“MS-13 is a brutal transnational criminal organization that has wreaked havoc in communities across the United States,” Assistant Attorney General Benczkowski explained at the Fresno press conference. “The gang engages in indiscriminate and senseless acts of violence,” Benczkowski said, and “dismantling MS-13 and other violent gangs that terrorize our streets will remain a top priority of the Department of Justice.”
The massive MS-13 bust prompted no statement from California Democrat Nancy Pelosi. In May of 2017, after President Trump denounced the gang’s bestial attacks, Pelosi invoked their “spark of divinity” as well as their “dignity and worth.” For ProPublica reporter Hanna Dreier, the MS-13 members “are working after-school jobs, they’re living with their parents, they get around Long Island on bicycles because they can’t afford cars.”
California governor Jerry Brown, a three-time failed contender for president, is on record that “Donald Trump is lying on immigration, lying about crime and lying about the laws of CA.” The Fresno MS-13 bust prompted no statement from the recurring governor, but Brown’s attorney general Xavier Becerra duly showed up at the press conference.
“When you talk about maiming human life, scarring them to the point that you don’t recognize them, I don’t know if you would call them human beings,” Becerra said, adding that his office’s operations are not based on “labels.” Even so, “If you want to commit a crime in California, we will find you,” said Becerra, and “especially if you want to terrorize our families and our communities, we will get you.” In Fresno and across the state, Californians had grounds for doubt.
In 2017, California sued the Trump administration 24 times and Becerra supports the state’s sanctuary law. The attorney general fines and prosecutes employers who tell federal officials about false-documented illegals. In similar style, Tani Cantil-Sakauye, chief justice of the California Supreme Court, has accused ICE of “stalking” criminal illegals in courthouses. California senator Kamala Harris is notably hostile to ICE and other Democrats want to abolish the federal agency.
Department of Justice and Homeland Security officials gave no indication of the MS-13 members’ immigration status. On the other hand, Californians might wonder how members of a murderous criminal gang entered the country in the first place and have managed to avoid arrest and deportation.
California Democrats claim their sanctuary law does not protect violent criminals but attorney general Xavier Becerra has made no effort to have MS-13 members deported. Last week’s bust, he said, was not based on “status,” only “criminal conduct.”
It also failed to emerge how many of the MS-13 members have received California driver’s licenses, which since 2015 automatically registers them to vote. In the sanctuary state of California, more than one million illegals are already registered to vote and maybe MS-13 gang members will be among those heading to the polls in November. As a State Department investigation shows, false-documented illegals have been voting in local, state and federal elections for decades.
Xavier Becerra, on the November ballot to retain his attorney general post, was once on Hillary Clinton’s short list as a running mate. As head of the Congressional Democratic Caucus, Becerra controlled the server where Pakistan-born IT man Imran Awan, who worked for DNC boss Debbie Wasserman Schultz, stashed sensitive data he lifted from House Democrats on key committees.
When capitol police requested the data, they got only a fake image. After the scandal broke, Becerra abandoned his seat and returned to California, where Jerry Brown appointed him attorney general.
Back in Washington, POTUS 44 judge Tanya Chutkan saw to it that nothing emerged about the IT scandal and Becerra’s handling of the server. Chutkan repeatedly delayed the trial and recently let Awan off with three months supervised release.
His Clinton crony lawyer Christopher Gowen told reporters Awan might seek a new start in Silicon Valley, California. Maybe attorney general Xavier Becerra will give the IT man a government job.