Police say 3 shot in Queens are Trinitarios; What we know about the street gang

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Queens gang related shooting suspects

Queens gang-related shooting suspects (Credit: NYPD)

NORTH CORONA, Queens — Three of 10 people wounded when two gunmen opened fire in Queens late Saturday were known members of the Trinitarios, a gang founded in 1992.

One police official called the shooting a “brazen coordinated attack.” He said the shooting follows common themes police have been seeing recently involving gang members, multiple guns, scooters and innocent bystanders getting shot.

As of Saturday, more than 1,050 people have been shot around the city in nearly 900 incidents compared to nearly 940 victims in more than 770 incidents by the same point in 2020. High-ranking police sources in July described at least a portion of the current gun violence crisis in the city as a “gang war.”

The Trinitarios gang, started by Rikers jail complex inmate Leonides Sierra, gained notoriety after the murder of Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz in the Bronx. Former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara previously described the gang as “a highly-organized criminal machine.”

“When Sierra created the Trinitarios Gang on Rikers Island in 1992, a dangerous and bloodthirsty organization was born, responsible for overwhelming violence both on the streets of New York and other cities, and inside the prison system,” Bharara previously said.

In 2018, experts estimated there were 1,000 members of the Trinitarios operating out of New York City.

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