A member of an MS-13 "clique" in East Boston pleaded guilty last week to fatally stabbing Irvin de Paz, 15, on Trenton Street as part of a successful effort to increase his standing in the gang in 2015.
Julio "Animal" Martinez, 23, a member of MS-13's Eastside Loco Salvatrucha, faces sentencing on March 22; he is looking at up to life in federal prison, the US Attorney's office reports.
According to prosecutors, Martinez took great joy in killing de Paz, like him a native of El Salvador:
In recorded conversations between Martinez and a cooperating witness, Martinez acknowledged being a member of MS-13 and admitted that he stabbed the victim to death. Specifically, Martinez said, “I stabbed the asshole three times, and it was a beautiful thing! Just beautiful!” As a result of the murder, Martinez was “jumped in” and made a “homeboy,” or full member of MS-13, during a ceremony that was surreptitiously recorded by federal agents. When a prospective member is “jumped in,” members of the MS-13 clique beat the new member with their hands and feet while one of the leaders of the clique counts aloud slowly to thirteen.
Martinez is the second MS-13 member to plead guilty over the past three weeks to the murder of a teen in Boston. Last month, Henry Josue "Street Danger" Parada Martinez admitted he helped kill Wilson Martinez, 15, whose body, with multiple stab wounds, was found on Constitution Beach.
The two men are among 61 people indicted in a federal sweep in 2016 against the El Salvador-based gang. Joel Martinez is the 27th person to plead or be found guilty. Should he get out of prison instead of dying there, he would face deportation, the US Attorney's office reports.