Mexican Mafia gunman Salvador Perez was sentenced Friday to life in prison without parole for the 2002 murder of a drug-gang rival and other crimes.
In his guilty plea, Perez said the Mexican Mafia controls drug sales in San Diego and in state prisons through its connection with violent Latino street gangs in San Diego.
Perez was the last of 35 defendants to be sentenced under a major organized crime investigation in San Diego by federal and municipal law enforcement agencies. But even as Perez was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw, officials conceded that the Mexican Mafia's influence remains.
"The criminal impact the Mexican Mafia has on our community is profound," said U.S. Atty. Karen Hewitt.
-- Tony Perry