Gov. Andrew Cuomo has called in the state police to provide support after an uptick of violence by the international criminal street gang Mara Salvatrucha, known as MS-13, in downstate New York.
MS-13 has engaged in brutal acts of violence and most recently has been identified as being responsible for the killings of four young men at a park on Long Island, where their mutilated bodies were discovered at a park in Central Park.
"Every New Yorker deserves to feel safe and secure in their home, however the recent rash of gang-related violence by MS-13 has threatened the safety of our communities," Cuomo said at a press conference Wednesday. "We must all work together to fight these senseless crimes."
State Police will make available any resources that could assist in not only improving coordination among law enforcement agencies, but that could strengthen or expedite ongoing MS-13 investigations. This includes enhanced coordination and resources from the Gang Intelligence Unit based in State’s Intelligence Center thanks to the addition of a Long Island-based investigator.
The FBI has similar task forces in Westchester County, the Hudson Valley as well as New York City, Albany and Buffalo.
The task force expands cooperation and communication among different agencies to increase productivity through shared resources and avoid duplication of investigative efforts.
"The State Police remain committed to combatting gang-related crimes, along with partnering with other law enforcement agencies to prevent this type of violence," State Police Superintendent George P. Beach II said. "Our streets have no place for this type of crime and we will continue to aggressively target and pursue criminals who negatively impact the quality of life in our communities."