On May 30, an 18-year-old New York man was charged in the 2017 machete murder of a Long Island teenager. He is the third individual to be charged in connection with the crime, which has been linked to the violent MS-13 gang.

According to media reports, the 16-year-old victim, originally from Honduras, disappeared while riding his bicycle in July 2017. In October, his body was found buried in a wooded area in Nassau County. Investigators determined that he had been hacked to death by a machete.

The defendant, a resident of Roosevelt, has been charged with second-degree murder in the case. He allegedly confessed to police that he is a member of the MS-13 gang. In January, two other male defendants, ages 18 and 26, were also indicted for the killing and face identical charges. In a visit to Long Island in late May, President Trump called the MS-13 gang “ruthless.” His administration has called for attempts to crack down on the gang’s activity.

Individuals charged with violent crimes like murder have the right work with a criminal defense attorney and fight the allegations in court. If the evidence in the case is shaky, it may be possible to convince a jury that a defendant is innocent. If the evidence is strong, it might be possible to prove that a defendant was acting in self-defense or attempting to defend another person. Another possible defense strategy may be to arrange a plea bargain with prosecutors. If this option is pursued, a defendant will decline his or her right to a trial and plead guilty to pre-negotiated charges, which may lead to a more lenient sentence.

Source: FOX News, “Third man charged in suspected New York MS-13 machete murder,” Greg Norman, May 30, 2018