A federal judge sentenced the leader of a Huntington clique of the Latin Kings street gang to 16 years in prison Wednesday for encouraging members to use violence against rival gang members.
Angel Cordero Jr., 29, of Deer Park, pleaded guilty in July 2011 to charges of gang-related conspiracy to commit assaults with dangerous weapons, attempted assault with a dangerous weapon, and illegal possession of a firearm in connection with a crime of violence, federal prosecutors said.
Edwin Morejon, 22, a co-defendant and Huntington Latin Kings member, was also sentenced to 16 years on similar charges, prosecutors said.
Cordero pleaded guilty after a two-year investigation by the FBI Long Island Gang Task Force, with participation from Suffolk police detectives, revealed that under Cordero's leadership, in 2009 and early 2010 members of the Huntington division of the Latin Kings shot four people they believed were rival gang members, according to a release issued by U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch. In addition Cordero "participated in multiple attempted shootings in the Huntington Station area of Long Island."
One of them was the Sept. 1, 2009, shooting near the Jack Abrams Intermediate School in Huntington Station, which eventually was closed down because of violence, some of it gang-related, in the area.
Much of the gunfire resulted from battles between the Latin Kings and four other gangs, federal prosecutors said.
"In his bid to own the streets of Huntington Station, Cordero turned those streets into a shooting gallery, unleashing gunfire throughout the community, including near a school," said Lynch in the statement.
Cordero and Morejon are among 16 Latin Kings members sentenced after pleading guilty to participating in violent, gang-related crimes in the Huntington Station area, the U.S. attorney's office said.