Cops: 4 of 5 charged in MS-13 murder are illegals
According to police and news reports, three of the five charged in the murder of New Jersey resident Jordy Mejia, 22, are in the country illegally. Another has a federal immigration detainer lodged against him, a clear sign authorities want to deport him.
The case is out of Montgomery County, Md., which is a designated “sanctuary,” according to the Center for Immigration Studies. That essentially means that the county does not turn over criminal illegals to federal officials even when asked.
However, a judge in the case has ordered the five held without bond due to concerns that since most are in the United States illegally, they will flee back home.
Gang violence has exploded in the Washington area, and nationally, driven in part by the surge of illegal youths across the border.
Here is the police report on the arrests.
Detectives from the Montgomery County Police Department – Major Crimes Division have arrested three additional suspects for the homicide of Jordy Mejia, age 22, of New Jersey. On November 12, 2016, Mejia’s body was found by hikers in a shallow grave in a wooded area in the 11500 block of Game Preserve Road.
Two suspects, Neris Moreno, age 19, of West New York, New Jersey, and Jackelin Leiba-Esperanza, age 16, of Brentwood, Maryland, were arrested on January 2 in Silver Spring on the strength of Montgomery County arrest warrants. They were charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and are being held without bond. Leiba-Esperanza has been charged as an adult.
Three additional suspects, Reynaldo A Granados-Vasquez, age 21, of Frederick Avenue in Gaithersburg, Jose Israel Melendez-Rivera, age 18, of Lost Knife Circle in Montgomery Village, and Katerine Solorzano-Aparicio, age 17, of Hyattsville, Maryland, were arrested yesterday in Montgomery County on the strength of arrest warrants. They were charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder. Solorzano-Aparicio has been charged as an adult. The three suspects are being held without bond. Melendez- Rivera and Solorzano-Aparicio were scheduled to have bond review today. Granados-Vasquez is scheduled to have bond review tomorrow.
Investigation by detectives has revealed that on October 15, 2016, the victim, Mejia, told his mother that he was traveling from their home in New Jersey to Maryland to meet a female that he had met on Facebook and would return the next day. On October 18, Mejia’s mother became concerned when the victim did not return home nor had he contacted her. She filed a missing person report with the local police department in New Jersey. Mejia’s mother was able to access her son’s Facebook account and discovered a long conversation between her son and what investigators now know was a fictitious female. Investigation has revealed that several of the suspects communicated with the victim using the fake Facebook account.
This Facebook conversation revealed that the fictitious female lured Mejia to Germantown, saying that she wanted to meet him. Mejia arrived to Montgomery County, where he was killed and buried in a shallow grave.
It is believed that the suspects are associated with the MS-13 gang.
Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner’s “Washington Secrets” columnist, can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org