Immigrant Teens Say They Were Falsely Accused Of MS-13 Membership

Aug 31, 2017

Immigrant minors from Long Island who were accused of MS-13 gang membership have now been moved out of the high security detention center in California were they had been awaiting deportation. Officials say there wasn’t enough evidence of MS-13 affiliation.

Three immigrant teens from Brentwood are now part of a class-action lawsuit that argues the minors were being held in the high security detention facility on unfounded allegations of gang involvement.

Walter Barrientos, Long Island coordinator for Make the Road New York, an immigrant advocacy group, said, “Overnight these young people were essentially snatched from their communities, removed from the state within 24 hours and sent to high security prisons across the country. I think it’s a complete outrage that our police department has been complicit in this operation that has re-traumatized many immigrant youth who had already survived the long and dangerous trek to reunite with their families in the United States.”

Suffolk Police Commissioner Timothy Sini says anyone the police department detains as an MS-13 gang member is in fact an MS-13 gang member.

The gang has been linked to multiple murders in Suffolk County in recent years.