Body camera video shows the traffic stop for tailgating that led to the arrest of an accused shot caller for the deadly Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) gang charged in a federal indictment of ordering murders, drug distribution, and money laundering for the gang in New York.
Edenilson Velasquez Larin, 33, was arrested just before noon on June 7 after the rented Toyota Highlander he was in was pulled over for following too closely on the Ohio Turnpike near state Route 53 in Sandusky Township, officials said in a news release. During the stop, a trooper called Border Patrol agents working in the area for assistance.
Once agents arrived, the driver, Gabriel Lopez, 26, Velasquez Larin, and the back seat passenger, Blanca Garcia, 31, were asked to step out of the vehicle. Garcia admitted to marijuana being in the vehicle, and illegal drugs were found during a search, officials said.
Authorities issued Garcia a citation for possession of marijuana, and he, Lopez, and Velasquez Larin were turned over to agents for further investigation, officials said.
In the body camera video, Velasquez Larin is cooperative as he is patted down for weapons by the trooper, then escorted into the back of a patrol vehicle.
Last month, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said Velasquez Larin was in immigration custody in Ohio while awaiting extradition to New York to face charges in the federal conspiracy.
His status on Wednesday was unclear. A message from Law&Crime seeking that information from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was not immediately returned.
In a June 28 news report, CBS Toledo affiliate WTOL said he was in isolation in a maximum security section of a jail in Toledo due to a “propensity for violence and was required to be escorted by at least two jailers when moved around the facility.”
Last month, Velasquez Larin was named in a superseding indictment, along with 22 other alleged MS-13 members and associates, accusing them of a laundry list of “brutal, cold-blooded, and utterly senseless” crimes of violence.
The indictment names nearly two dozen reputed members and associates of the gang.
Among the allegations is the murder of a 17-year-old boy lured to a park where he was beaten, stabbed and strangled, and the attempted killing of a rival who was chased down and slashed with machetes in his back and head before he managed to escape, authorities said.
In another case, on Nov. 4, 2019, two purported MS-13 members allegedly shot and killed a man in a street near his home in Queens, New York. As the victim’s body lay in the street, a third alleged MS-13 member wearing gloves removed the victim’s cellphone, prosecutors said.
Early Sept. 6, 2020, two suspected MS-13 members allegedly shot and killed a man sitting in his parked car near his home in Queens after a day at the beach with his wife and young children, court documents said. The victim’s wife had just taken their young children into their home and returned to the car to find parking when the shooting began, authorities said.
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