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MS-13 gang member to serve life in prison

Mauricio Alvarado-Vasquez, 31, was sentenced to life in prison without parole after a four-week trial for crimes that took place in 2019.

COLORADO, USA — A member of the MS-13 gang was sentenced to life in prison without parole for participating in several murders and attempted murders in 2019, the Office of the 18th Judicial District Attorney (DAO) said in a press release Thursday. 

Mauricio Alvarado-Vasquez, 31, was sentenced  in July after a four-week trial, the office said. 

According to the release, the following are crimes in which Alvarado-Vasquez was connected: 

Murder of Vicky DeDios | September 2019

The dispatch center in Aurora responded to a 911 call about a car fire on Sept. 8 and found DeDios' body after extinguishing the flames—she was stabbed over 20 times, the office said. 

Investigators learned through interviews with other members that Alvarado-Vasquez and co-defendant David Tobias-Carvajal parked her car on the shoulder of Interstate 225 and set it on fire after stabbing her, the release said. 

"[Alvarado-Vasquez] bragged about stabbing the victim first and then asked her how it feels to die," said Chief Deputy District Attorney Laura Wilson. 

Murder of Carlos Ramirez-Rivera | November 2019

In the early morning of Nov. 2, Glendale police found Ramirez-Rivera dead in the driver seat of a car after being dispatched to a traffic crash at the intersection of E. Kentucky and S. Birch Street, the office said. 

The release states that "surveillance camera footage revealed Ramirez-Rivera was stopped at a stop sign when another car pulled up and fired multiple shots, striking him in his arms and chest."

RELATED: Man dead, found inside vehicle with gunshot wounds in Glendale

Attempted murder of Alexander Portillo | Sept. - Oct. 2019:

Detectives found that Alvarado-Vasquez and two other co-defendants conspired via Facebook and another messaging app to kill Portillo — these conspiracies happened between September and October 2019, said the DA. 

The DA's office added that members of MS-13 were trying to learn Portillo's work schedule, employer and car model in order to "ambush and kill him."

Apartment complex shooting | November 2019:

Aurora police responded to a shooting at an apartment complex on South Ironton Street at around 2:30 a.m. on Nov. 11— the six people who were shot survived, said the DA. 

RELATED: 3 shot in Aurora early Monday morning

According to the release, Alvarado-Vasquez is one of more than 12 defendants charged with crimes related to the MS-13 gang between 2019 and 2020, and two trials are still pending as of August 2023. 

“This is one of the most violent and brutal gangs I have come across in my career as a prosecutor,” said District Attorney John Kellner. “I cannot stress enough how grateful I am to the state and federal law enforcement team that dedicated years to bringing these defendants to justice. Their efforts prevented this transnational criminal gang from gaining a foothold in our community.”

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