MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – A Long Island man charged with second-degree murder in connection with a suspected MS-13 gang killing will be arraigned Thursday.

Jose Quintanilla Cruz, 23, of Hempstead, was charged Wednesday in the stabbing death of 21-year-old Carlos Rivas-Majano.

Police say the victim was killed last year, but his body wasn’t found until last month. Acting on a tip, investigators found his remains in a shallow grave near Kellenberg High School in East Meadow on the first day of school.

“Again, we are reminded of the brutality of gang violence,” Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said at the time. “There are too many parents, too many families, who have seen their children butchered by these gangs, and this must stop.” 

Last month, 21-year-old Carlos Benitez-Hernandez, an admitted MS-13 gang member, was also charged with second-degree murder in the case. He pleaded not guilty.

Police say there have been no known MS-13-related murders so far this year in Nassau County. They say they believe they’re making progress due to an island-wide crackdown.

“Dedicated to eradicating this gang and making sure that the people who commit these horrific murders are held to account,” said Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas.

Nassau County police are expected to provide more details at a press conference Thursday morning.


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