On Tuesday, Manuel Adan Yanez Cruz, a/k/a “Rocky,” a/k/a “Flaco,” a leader of a local MS-13 clique in Boston was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Leo T. Sorokin to 162 months in prison and three years of supervised release.
On March 18, 2022, Cruz pleaded guilty to conspiracy to conduct enterprise affairs through a pattern of racketeering activity, more commonly referred to as RICO or racketeering conspiracy.
On Dec. 24, 2016, Cruz was involved in the murder of a teenage boy in East Boston. Specifically, he informed at least one individual of the murder before it occurred and participated in the planning of the victim’s murder, which was based on the belief that the victim may have been associated with a rival gang. Cruz was present at the murder along with other MS-13 members to serve as both a witness for El Salvador leaders and to assist as needed. At the time the murder was committed,
Following the murder, Cruz boasted about his involvement in the murder to help recruit others, including minors, into the MS-13 gang and to earn elevated gang status. Intercepted communications showed that Yanez Cruz communicated with both national and international MS-13 leaders and members about MS-13 gang matters, including the transmission of fees to El Salvador.
In April 2018, Cruz was involved in the attempted murder of a victim whom he, along with other MS-13 members, suspected of being a gang rival. MS-13 members lured the victim to the Belle Isle Marsh where a member shot the victim in the head. The gun malfunctioned, however, and the victim survived.
In September 2018, Cruz was arrested for an assault on a rival gang member in which he possessed a knife on a public street in broad daylight. In phone communications following the incident, another MS-13 member present at the incident told an associate about the violent nature of the event and that they had almost killed the victim.
Cruz is an El Salvadoran citizen and will be subject to deportation proceedings upon completion of his sentence.