GREENBELT, Md. (WJZ) — A 21-year-old member of the MS-13 gang was sentenced to 20 years in prison Monday for conspiring to kidnap a man he believed was part of a rival gang and killing him.
A plea agreement said Jose Israel Melendez-Rivera, of Gaithersburg, and Neris Moreno-Martinez, of New Jersey, created a fake social media account designed to trick the victim into thinking the fake person was romantically interested in him.
The duo, posing as the fake account, convinced the victim, Jordy Mejia, to show up at Melendez-Rivera’s home before driving him to a wooded area, drowning him and stabbing his body with machetes.
Melendez-Rivera, who according to the plea agreement had entered the United States illegally in 2014, was also sentenced to five years of supervised release after the prison term.
Moreno-Martinez and another defendant, Reynaldo Alexis Granados-Vasquez, of Gaithersburg, have also pleaded guilty and are scheduled to be sentenced on June 25 and July 9 respectively.