The 5-foot-4, 125-pound Juan Elias Garcia fled from Long Island, New York, after a February 2010 double murder.
Here’s what you should know about Garcia and why the feds want him so badly:
1. He Allegedly Murdered His Girlfriend & Her 2-Year-Old Son
On the night of February 4, 2010, a 17-year-old Garcia picked up 19-year-old Vanessa Argueta and her 2-year-old son. Garcia told the woman, whom he was believed to be dating at the time, that they were going to dinner. Then, according to authorities, he drove to a wooded and desolate area of Central Islip, Long Island. There Argueta and her son were both killed execution style. Argueta was shot in the head and chest with a .22-caliber handgun, and her son was shot twice in the head.
Their bodies were found the next day. The FBI believes the violence occurred after a dispute over Argueta’s association with a rival gang.
2. He Has Ties to El Salvador & Other Central American Nations
The FBI warns that Garcia has ties to El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala and Panama, but specifically to the city of Santa Rosa de Lima, El Salvador, where he was born in 1993.
Garcia’s alleged gang, MS-13, also has deep and nefarious ties to El Salvador. A recent report by the New York Post reveals that the U.S. street gang has been funneling political support to the country’s leading party in exchange for favors. MS-13 was founded by Salvadoran expatriates in Los Angeles in the 1980s.
3. He Was Just Placed on the FBI’S Most Wanted List
On March 26, the FBI announced the addition of Garcia to the 10 Most Wanted list for his alleged involvement in the 2010 murder. According to the wanted poster, which you can see above, Garcia is wanted for “Conspiracy to Commit Murder in Aid of Racketeering; Murder in Aid of Racketeering; Discharge of a Firearm During a Crime of Violence; Causing the Death of Another Through the Use of a Firearm.”
According to FBI New York’s official statement, Garcia faces three terms of life in prison plus an additional 60 years.
4. MS-13 Has Tens of Thousands of Members Across the United States
MS-13, aka Mara Salvatrucha, is estimated to have anywhere between 10,000 and 70,000 members in dozens of states across the United States. The gang has been implicated in numerous murders, including one spree in New Jersey labeled as a “reign of terror” by the U.S. Attorney.
5. The FBI Is Offering a $100,000 Award
The FBI is offering $100,000 to anyone who can provide information leading to Garcia’s capture and arrest. Any information should be given to a local FBI office or an American Embassy or Consulate.