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Transnational Gangs

North Carolina ICE agents capture accused co-conspirator in Bay Area triple murder

Wilfredo Ruano Reyes

SALISBURY, N.C. – A gang member accused of participating in the 2008 murder of three members of a Bay Area family was captured Monday morning by special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and local law enforcement at a residence on the outskirts of this rural community north of Charlotte.

Wilfredo Ruano Reyes, 31, a.k.a. "Flaco," was taken into custody by HSI special agents after he attempted to escape through a window of the home. Reyes was wanted on a $5 million arrest warrant for his role in the murder of Anthony Bologna and his sons Michael and Matthew. The three were gunned down in a drive-by shooting in San Francisco's Excelsior District that investigators believe was a case of mistaken identity by gang members. A third son survived the shooting.

HSI, working in close collaboration with the San Francisco Police Department, had been attempting to locate Reyes since he was charged as a co-conspirator in the shooting. Investigators received a tip Sunday night about Reyes' possible whereabouts and placed the Rowan County residence under surveillance. Shortly after dawn, investigators and deputies moved in.

"After four years, this suspect probably believed he had succeeded in eluding justice, but today he learned otherwise," said Clark Settles, special agent in charge for HSI San Francisco. "As a result of our collaborative enforcement efforts, a dangerous fugitive has been captured and will be returned to California to answer for his crimes. The outcome of this manhunt again shows the importance of federal and local cooperation in promoting public safety and protecting our communities."

Reyes, who is being held without bond, now faces extradition to California where he will be charged with three counts of murder, one count of conspiracy to murder, one count of attempted murder and gang allegations.

A second gang member, Edwin Ramos, 25, was convicted earlier this year of the murders and sentenced to three consecutive life terms. During those proceedings, Ramos maintained Reyes was the gunman and he had no previous knowledge the murders were going to take place.