After a hard start in life Luis Fernando Orellana Ruano was trying to get his life back on track. The Eastie teen that bounced between living with relatives to living in foster homes showed his fair share of rebellion and angst but through YouthBuild, a Cambridge program, he began learning how to fix motorcycles.
Sadly, his aspirations for a better life came too little too late.
Orellana Ruano, the son of Guatemalan coffee farmers, was stabbed to death on Christmas Eve 2016 on the steps of the bleachers at East Boston Memorial Stadium–a tragic end to a boy who could have had a bright future but unfortunately slipped through the cracks.
Now, five years after his murder, justice has been served for Orellana Ruano.
Last week U.S. Senior District Court Judge Mark L. Wolf sentenced Henri Salvador Gutierrez, a/k/a “Perverso,” 23, a Salvadoran national, to life in prison for Orellana Ruano’s murder as well as the 2018 murder of another teen in Lynn.
Gutierrez, a member of the violent MS-13 gang, was indicted in federal court on RICO conspiracy charges and plead guilty for his participation in the two grizzly murders. In each instance court documents showed Gutierrez played a critical role in repeatedly stabbing both teens to death. Wolf said each of the victims was murdered with extreme atrocity and cruelty in violation of Massachusetts law.
According to court documents, Gutierrez lured Orellana Ruano to a public soccer stadium on Christmas Eve 2016 based solely on Gutierrez’s belief that the victim may have been associated with a rival gang. Gutierrez personally stabbed the victim numerous times and left the victim’s body at the bottom of a stairwell. An autopsy revealed the victim had at least a dozen sharp force wounds consistent with a stabbing, with significant injuries to the neck, chest and back. His throat appeared to have been slashed, and he had multiple incised wounds to the neck and multiple stab wounds to the chest.
In 2017, while the December 2016 murder remained unsolved, and unrelated to that investigation, immigration authorities arrested Gutierrez as part of ongoing removal proceedings. Gutierrez had entered the United States unlawfully in 2014 and was facing deportation.
Authorities sought to remove Gutierrez from the United States and pointed to evidence of his association with MS-13 as part of the reasons to oppose Gutierrez’s petition for asylum and other relief.
Gutierrez submitted an affidavit and testified under oath at his removal proceedings. Through his statements, Gutierrez misled the immigration court, telling the court that he was not associated with MS-13, had not committed prior violence, and was committed to living a peaceful life in the United States.
Relying in part on Gutierrez’s false testimony, in an order dated June 22, 2018, a United States Immigration Judge ordered Gutierrez released and adjusted his status to that of a person admitted for lawful permanent residence in the United States.
On July 30, 2018, barely a month after being released from immigration custody, Gutierrez committed his second murder, this time with five members of the Sykos clique of MS-13. The six assailants, four of whom were secretly armed with knives, took a 17-year-old boy to a park in Lynn and pretended to be friendly with the unsuspecting victim. At the scene, the six men surrounded the victim and repeatedly stabbed and hacked him to death.
After killing the victim, the gang members left his body in the wooded area of the public park where it was discovered days later, on Aug. 2, 2018.
An autopsy revealed that the victim suffered at least 32 distinct sharp force trauma wounds consistent with being stabbed repeatedly, along with multiple blunt force injuries. The victim also had small pieces of metal embedded in his head, consistent with parts of the large knives breaking with the force of the strikes to the victim’s skull.
The evidence in this case included recording of Gutierrez describing the murder in graphic detail and boasting about it. The recordings revealed that the gang members murdered the victim based on their mistaken belief that he may have been assisting law enforcement.
In the recordings, Gutierrez seemingly took pleasure in recounting the horrific act and expressed laughter while saying the murder was like “chopping wood,” as he and fellow gang members “were stabbing the knife right through him, bringing it down like […] Bang, bang, bang, bang!” Following an investigation in November 2018 Gutierrez was indicted along with the five other MS-13 members who participated in the July 2018 murder in Lynn. The six defendants in this case included five participants in the 2018 murder, as well as one longstanding member of the Sykos clique. In a related case, the government charged a juvenile co-conspirator who was the sixth person involved in the murder.