Esteban Alvarado-Bonilla was hard at work inside El Campesino Deli in Central Islip, New York, when MS-13 gangster Mario Aguilar-Lopez entered the deli, approached him from behind and shot him multiple times. One bullet exited his head and seriously injured one of his coworkers standing in front of him. Alvarado-Bonilla was dead on the spot as his assassin fled the scene.
Aguilar-Lopez was a member of the Sailors Locos Salvatruchas Westside (Sailors) clique of the La Mara Salvatrucha street gang in Long Island, also known as MS-13. He and several of his colleagues believed Alvarado-Bonilla was a member of the rival 18th Street gang. It was enough to sentence him to death.
On Tuesday, 20-year-old Mario Aguilar-Lopez stood in federal court in Central Islip and pleaded guilty to murder and assault charges relating to his participation in the January 30, 2017 murder of Alvarado-Bonilla and shooting of an innocent bystander, “Jane Doe.” Aguilar-Lopez faces up to life imprisonment for the murder, 20 years for the assault and deportation from the United States.
“Aguilar-Lopez committed a deliberate, cold-blooded broad daylight murder in the name of MS-13, shooting a suspected rival gang member from behind and seriously wounding an innocent bystander who was simply working her job,” stated United States Attorney Richard Donoghue. “The Eastern District of New York and our law enforcement partners will continue to relentlessly investigate and prosecute MS-13 and other gangs until our communities are rid of this menace.”
“Global criminal enterprises like MS-13 thrive by terrorizing communities with fears of violence, intimidation, and retribution,” stated FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge William Sweeney. “When Aguilar-Lopez decided to serve as judge, jury, and executioner in carrying out MS-13’s version of vigilante justice in killing a rival gang member, he also put the lives of innocent bystanders at risk. As today’s conviction demonstrates, the FBI’s Long Island Safe Streets Gang Task Force will continue to hold violent gangs and murderers fully accountable for their actions, and work to ensure safety and peace of mind for our citizens and communities.”
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