FRESNO, California (KSEE/KGPE) – A 22-year-old Mendota man was sentenced to two years and three months in prison for assault with a deadly weapon in aid of racketeering, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced.
According to court documents, Edgar Torres-Amador, 22, was an associate of La Mara Salvatrucha MS‑13, a violent criminal street gang that engages in racketeering activity, including murder, kidnapping, extortion, and drug trafficking.
On March 13, Torres-Amador pleaded guilty to assaulting a juvenile with a cylindrical object in furtherance of the MS-13 gang, Scott said.
According to the plea agreement, Torres-Amador and two other MS-13 members were driving past an elementary school in Mendota when they saw the juvenile walking in front of the school. Torres-Amador stopped the car and he and the two other MS-13 members got out, confronted the juvenile, yelled “MS-13” and “Mara Salvatrucha” and started hitting and kicking the juvenile.
At one point, Torres-Amador also grabbed a cylindrical object and used it to hit the juvenile.
In Facebook messages intercepted after the attack, Torres-Amador and two other MS-13 members discussed contacting the juvenile and threatening him to dissuade him from talking to police or testifying against Torres-Amador.
Co-defendant Claudia Lizaola was sentenced to 10 years in prison for conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute controlled substances.
Six other co-defendants have pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing.
The remaining nine co-defendants are scheduled for trial in September.