In Maryland, Bloods and M-13 Gangs Are Growing Problem

New statistics show growth of large national gangs, especially around Baltimore

He changed his mind, he said, after the 2004 shooting death of a 37-year-old father of nine. Wayne Lavon Bond Jr., who prosecutors said was a Bloods recruit, was found guilty of first-degree murder and received 45 years in prison.

Yosua said authorities have documented 140 Bloods members in the county, though some might no longer be active.

That is not to say that gang experts will ignore MS-13 members in Maryland, officials said.

Mara refers to a gang, while Salva is an abbreviation for Salvadoran. Trucha is slang for "fear us," according to federal authorities. An estimated 10,000 MS-13 members are in the United States, many in the Washington suburbs, which has a large number of Central American immigrants.

Authorities are tracking other developments, including a new outpost of the Hell's Angels motorcycle gang in Baltimore. Until recently, Word said, the rival Pagans were thought to hold the greatest sway in Maryland.

Many yesterday called for the increased coordination among anti-gang law enforcement agents in the state and better links to the work on the national level.

Word added that Maryland should pass a state racketeering law to mirror the one in the federal system known as RICO.

The RICO statutes have enabled prosecutors to hold gang members responsible for their crimes and seek hefty prison sentences, as well as seize their assets, according to Word.

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