Two members of the Netas street gang and one of their wives pleaded guilty Monday in connection with the 2004 murders of two members of the rival Latin Kings.
Jason Cabral, 36, a leader of the Netas, and his brother, Alvaro Cabral, 28, pleaded guilty in federal court in Central Islip to murder by use of a firearm in the killings of Anthony Marcano and Fabian Mestres, both then 17, officials said.
Jason Cabral's wife, Stephanie DiCarlo-Cabral, 29, who also was described as a Netas' associate, pleaded guilty to robbery in which a firearm was used, officials said.
In entering their pleas before U.S. District Judge Joanna Seybert, the three read from brief statements, with DiCarlo-Cabral stopping occasionally because she was crying.
Marcano and Mestres, who dealt marijuana and cocaine, were lured to a Brentwood house ostensibly to sell drugs. But the Netas had planned to rob them, said the prosecutors Nicole Boeckmann and Christopher Caffarone.
"These were brutal, senseless gang murders," U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District, Loretta Lynch, said in a statement. "We hope the victims' families can take some measure of solace in knowing that the individuals who are responsible for their sons' murders have been brought to justice."
When Marcano and Mestres got to the Brentwood house they were robbed at gunpoint, restrained with duct tape, their bodies were wiped clean of possible fingerprints, and while still alive, were put in a car trunk, prosecutors said in court papers.
The robbers got several thousand dollars in marijuana, jewelry and cash, and even later sold the car the two Latin Kings arrived in to a chop shop, according to sources familiar with the case.
The two victims were then driven around Brooklyn and Queens until the car came to a vacant lot by an industrial building in Ridgewood. The car trunk was opened and another Netas member, Luis Benitez, fatally shot Marcano and Mestres in the head with a shotgun, according to the prosecutors.
Benitez pleaded guilty to the murders in November and is awaiting sentencing.
Jason Cabral faces up to 37 years in prison under the terms of a plea agreement; his brother, Alvaro Cabral, 30 years, and DiCarlo-Cabral, 20 years.The three were arrested May 2012 by FBI agents on the bureau's Long Island Gang Task Force and New York City homicide detectives.