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Mexican Mafia allegedly ordered hit after baby was killed in MacArthur Park

June 18, 2009 |  6:42 am

When a stray bullet from a gang member's gun struck 3-week-old Luis Angel Garcia in the heart and killed him in 2007, police, politicians and ordinary Angelenos expressed outrage over the infant's death. 

But they weren't the only ones.  Members of the Mexican Mafia, the notorious prison-based organization that authorities say controls Latino street gangs, demanded that those responsible be killed, according to an indictment unsealed this week in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. 

The edict, known as a "green light," was aimed at members of the 18th Street gang, who were thought to have killed the baby during a botched attack on a street vendor who'd refused to pay "rent" to conduct business in the gang's territory near MacArthur Park.

Hoping to avoid the Mexican Mafia's wrath, the 18th Streeters decided to take care of the problem themselves, according to authorities. In the days after the baby’s slaying, two gang members lured the shooter to Mexico under the false pretense that he was being hidden from police investigating the murder, the indictment states. Once there, they attempted to strangle him and left "him for dead on the side of a road," according to prosecutors.

-- Scott Glover