THE BRONX (PIX11) — A Trinitarios gang leader was sentenced to life in prison on Tuesday after he ordered the murder of two teens, officials said.
Ediberto Santana headed up the Sunset set of the gang from at least 2010 through 2019, United States Attorney Damian Williams said. During that time, he ordered acts of violence that ended in the deaths of 16-year-old Dennis Marquez, 17-year-old Michael Beltre and 22-year-old Rafael Alam.
“While nothing can make whole the families and communities of Dennis Marquez, Michael Beltre, and Rafael Alam, we hope that today’s sentence is some measure of closure and justice for them,” Williams said. “We are committed to addressing gang violence in our communities and to holding accountable those who instigate such violence.”
Marquez was stabbed to death on March 13, 2022, just months after he’d moved from the Dominican Republic to the US, prosecutors in the Bronx previously said. The teen was stopped by Trinitarios members when he tried to leave a house party that day.
They asked Marquez if he was in a gang. Marquez, who had no gang affiliation, tried to escape, authorities said. The Trinitarios members at the party jumped him and stabbed him to death.
Santana, 33, pleaded guilty to one count of racketeering conspiracy with murder as a special sentencing factor. Prosecutors have said that, under his leadership, gang members committed a “near-constant string of violent crime” over the course of several years.