For Immediate Release - March 04, 2015

Gang Member Convicted, Sentenced to 24 to 25 Years in State Prison for Plotting to Murder Two ‘Renegade’ Gang Members

Defendant Sentenced in Connection with Extensive Investigation into Violent Street Gang

SALEM – A member of a violent national street gang has been sentenced to 24 to 25 years in state prison after he was convicted on charges related to a plot to murder two “renegade” gang members, Attorney General Maura Healey announced today. 

On Feb. 24, after a five-day jury trial in Essex Superior Court, Frutoso Barros, age 32, of Lynn, was convicted on charges of Conspiracy to Commit Murder (2 counts), Conspiracy to Commit Armed Home Invasion, and Conspiracy to Commit Assault and Battery with a Dangerous Weapon.

On Tuesday in Essex Superior Court, Judge James Lang sentenced Barros, a habitual offender, to 20 years in state prison on the two counts of Conspiracy to Commit Murder, followed by four to five years in state prison for Conspiracy to Commit Assault and Battery with a Dangerous Weapon. Judge Lang sentenced Barros to five years of probation for Conspiracy to Commit Armed Home Invasion, to serve upon his release from prison.

“The national gang that this defendant belonged to has terrorized our neighborhoods and threatened the safety of our communities across the state,” said AG Healey. “This lengthy sentence is the result of a joint effort between our office and the FBI. Our office remains committed to working with our federal, state, and local partners in order get violent criminals off our streets.”

“The sentencing of Frutoso Barros is a significant disruption to the Latin Kings organization,” said Vincent B. Lisi, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Boston Division. “These types of violent acts are debilitating to a neighborhood and a threat to our communities. The FBI and our state and local partners will continue to work together to target criminals in order to keep our neighborhoods safe.”

In 2012, the FBI referred a North Shore Gang Task Force investigation into the Almighty Latin Kings and Queen Nation (Latin Kings) to the AG’s Office. The Latin Kings are a national violent street gang with chapters across the country.

Through the investigation, authorities discovered that three leaders of Massachusetts chapters of the gang orchestrated a meeting with more than 30 Latin King members to discuss killing two members within the gang that were “running renegade.”  Those leaders were Barros, leader of the Boston chapter, Miguel Negron, leader of the Western Massachusetts chapter, and Miguel Rodriquez, leader of the Chelsea chapter.

During this meeting, the three leaders developed a plan to murder two rival members within the gang who were based in Chicopee and Lynn and who they believed were creating dissension within the gang and disrespecting the rules of the Latin Kings. One week later, law enforcement intercepted 23 Latin Kings on their way to Lynn to commit the armed assault and recovered one handgun from the three-car caravan. 

Barros, Negron and Rodriquez were indicted by a Statewide Grand Jury in November 2013. On Jan. 16, Negron pleaded guilty and was sentenced to eight to ten years in state prison, with two years of probation to serve upon his release. Rodriguez is in federal custody serving a sentence and has yet to be arraigned.   

The case was handled by Assistant Attorney General Marina Moriarty of Attorney General Healey’s Enterprise and Major Crimes Division and Assistant Attorney General Thomas Caldwell. The case was investigated by the FBI and the North Shore Gang Task Force, with assistance from the State Police, Department of Correction, Chelsea Police, Western Massachusetts Gang Task Force, Boston Police, Lynn Police, Malden Police, Holyoke Police and Springfield Police Departments.