The White House dropped a several-hundred-word press release explaining why MS-13 gang members are “animals” after President Donald Trump’s comments about immigrants living in the U.S. illegally sparked a backlash.
"Too many innocent Americans have fallen victim to the unthinkable violence of MS-13’s animals," the White House release said, in an apparent clarification that Trump’s reference to “animals” was about violent gang members, not undocumented immigrants in general.
"MS-13 is a transnational gang that has brought violence, fear, and suffering to American communities. MS-13, short for Mara Salvatrucha, commits shocking acts of violence to instill fear, including machete attacks, executions, gang rape, human trafficking, and more."
Trump gave an ambiguous response to Sheriff Margaret Mims of Fresno County, California, who complained to the president that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers were too restricted by rules preventing them from picking up gang members.
At one point during the May 16 roundtable with California sheriffs on its "sanctuary state" status, Mims referenced MS-13, a Salvadoran crime gang known for its ruthlessness and brutality that operates across the U.S. But Trump’s reply, his critics said, gave the impression he was talking about all immigrants living in the U.S. illegally, not just violent criminals.
“We have people coming into the country, or trying to come in—and we’re stopping a lot of them—but we’re taking people out of the country,” Trump said. “You wouldn’t believe how bad these people are. These aren’t people. These are animals.”
Amid the furor over Trump’s “animals” comments, White House spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders said he “was very clearly referring to MS-13 gang members who enter the country illegally and whose deportations are hamstrung by our laws.”
Here’s the White House release on MS-13 in full.
What You Need to Know About The Violent Animals Of MS-13
WHAT: The violent animals of MS-13 have committed heinous, violent attacks in communities across America.
Too many innocent Americans have fallen victim to the unthinkable violence of MS-13’s animals.
At the State of the Union in January 2018, President Trump brought as his guests Elizabeth Alvarado, Robert Mickens, Evelyn Rodriguez, and Freddy Cuevas, the parents of Nisa Mickens and Kayla Cuevas. Police believe these young girls were chased down and brutally murdered by MS-13 gang members on Long Island, New York, in 2016. Suffolk County Police Commissioner stated that the “murders show a level of brutality that is close to unmatched.”
In Maryland, MS-13’s animals are accused of stabbing a man more than 100 times and then decapitating him, dismembering him, and ripping his heart out of his body. Police believe MS-13 members in Maryland also savagely beat a 15-year-old human trafficking victim. The MS-13 animals used a bat and took turns beating her nearly 30 times in total.
In Houston, Texas, two MS-13 members were charged after kidnapping and sexually assaulting one girl and murdering another. The two MS-13 animals laughed, smiled, and waved for cameras in court as they faced the charges.
New York communities have suffered tremendously from the abhorrent violence of MS-13. Nearly 40 percent of all murders in Suffolk County, New York between January 2016 and June 2017 were tied to MS-13.
In January 2017, MS-13 members were charged with killing and hacking up a teenager in Nassau County. MS-13’s animals reportedly saw the murder as a way to boost their standing in the gang. In April 2017, police believe four young men were brutally murdered by MS-13 animals on Long Island. One victim was a young man in town visiting family during an Easter week vacation. Just last month, in April 2018, MS-13 reportedly called for its members on Long Island to kill a cop for the sake of making a statement.
WHY: MS-13 is a transnational gang which follows the motto of “kill, rape, control” by committing shocking acts of violence in an attempt to instill fear and gain control.
MS-13 is a transnational gang that has brought violence, fear, and suffering to American communities. MS-13, short for Mara Salvatrucha, commits shocking acts of violence to instill fear, including machete attacks, executions, gang rape, human trafficking, and more. In their motto, the animals of MS-13 make clear their goal is to “kill, rape, control.” The gang has more than 10,000 members in the United States spreading violence and suffering.
Recent investigations have revealed MS-13 gang leaders based in El Salvador have been sending representatives into the United States illegally to connect the leaders with local gang members. These foreign-based gang leaders direct local members to become even more violent in an effort to control more territory.
President Trump’s entire Administration is working tirelessly to bring these violent animals to justice.
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