ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A member of the MS-13 street gang who was extradited from El Salvador to the U.S. to face charges has been sentenced to 35 years in prison for an attempted murder.
Federal prosecutors said after Friday's sentencing that the case is significant because it marks the first time that a Salvadoran citizen has been extradited to the U.S. to face charges for gang-related activity.
Twenty-six-year-old Edgar Benitez Hernandez admitted he shot a man and a pregnant woman in a Loudoun County park in 2008 because he believed the man was a rival gang member. Both victims survived, and Benitez Hernandez fled for El Salvador after the shootings.
He was indicted in federal court in Alexandria in 2010, and arrested last year by an anti-gang task force in El Salvador.