I was reading an article in the Washington Examiner’s Sunday Edition dated August 5, 2012, and I was appalled as I read that a self-admitted MS-13 gang member admitted to taking a juvenile across state lines for the purpose of prostituting her. According to officials, he has been charged with the offense.
This is becoming a problem in many local areas within the Washington, D.C. area and surrounding areas too. It’s such a crime to see young teens being sold like they’re nothing but a common sale item. Their lives are being ruined by these people as they use them, abuse them, and use them as sex workers to enrich their own pockets. Many of these young teens have not had a good life to begin with and they have a tendency to fall prey to gangs who use them as they please. It’s ashame to see this happening in our country and other countries too. There must be more we can do to prevent these teens from getting involved with the wrong people.
In the article it stated the MS-13 member’s name is Yimmy Anthony Pineda Penado, also known as Critico and Spike; he was arrested on July 31, 2012 according to court records. He is being detained and a preliminary hearing is scheduled in federal court in Alexandria, Virginia on Monday, August 6, 2012.
It also indicated the MS-13 gang is known to be a violent international group that has a known presence in the Washington, D.C. area. Pineda Penado has been named the leader of the clique, he has approximately 30 other gang members who follow him according to court documents. There’s a former MS-13 gang member who is cooperating with authorities and providing them with information.
According to the article, the informant, who has already been convicted of sex trafficking teens, has informed the police that he worked with Penado helping him to operate a juvenile prostitution scheme ring for several months. Penado would prey on the girls and stay with them as he provided them with drugs and alcohol which kept them compliant and under his control.
The article indicated that a juvenile female reported to law enforcement that Penado would make her have sex for money when she was as young as 15 and 16 years old. This girl was sold for sex in hotels in Northern Virginia; she was also taken to an MS-13 controlled house in Maryland too, according to court documents.
According to the article, in the fall of 2009, the informant stated juveniles were taken to a hotel in Falls Church to have sex for money but the police interrupted Penado’s operation. According to the informant, the following day, Penado again picked up two girls who had worked for the informant and took them to Maryland, where he continued to use them as sex workers, according to court documents.
The article stated that Penado continued to arrange for the teen and at least one of the girls he’d picked up to work as sex workers for money. According to court documents, Penado told the teen to lie about her age and she was also advised to charge extra for other types of sexual acts other than regular intercourse. She was also told to act like she enjoyed having sex with the men. Penado provided the teen with condoms, marijuana, crystal meth, ecstasy, tequila; this was done to ensure that she could be taken advantage of and without any problems.
The article stated Penado is from El Salvador and he is in the United States illegally, according to officials. Penado’s attorney has indicated it’s too early for him to comment on the evidence because he just recently received the case. Penado’s attorney indicated that he plans to argue there is not probable cause for the charge against his client.
This troubles me in many ways because these young girls are too young to realize what’s happening to them until it’s too late. A 15 to 16 year old girl is not capable of making the right decisions for herself; therefore, parents need to pay close attention to which their children are running around with and they need to watch their comings and goings and to keep a close tab on their activities at all times. A young person’s life can be destroyed in a matter of a few weeks and many times they do not escape with their life.
1. http://www.WashingtonExaminer.Com/Crime article by Examiner Staff Writer, Naomi Jagoda ([email protected])
Photograph Images & Copyrights as follows:
1. wikimedia commons/Michelle Zanatta
3. wikimedia commons/Matthew Watts