President Donald Trump traveled to Long Island, New York Friday to deliver a speech, vowing that “[w]e’re going to destroy” the violent MS-13 gang and sending a clear message to criminal aliens that law enforcement officials are hunting them down and seeking to prosecute, jail, and deport them.
“Together we’re going to restore safety to our streets and peace to our communities and we’re going to destroy the vile, criminal cartel MS-13 and many other gangs,” Trump said, speaking before an audience of law enforcement officers at the police academy at Suffolk County Community College in Brentwood.
Long Island has been a recent hotspot where hundreds of MS-13 gang members were recently arrested.
He also commented that he was surprised by the gang violence on Long Island.
“I grew up on Long Island,” he said. “I didn’t know about this. … I never thought I’d be up here talking about liberating the towns of Long Island where I grew up.”
“We’ve gotten a lot of them out of here,” Trump said. “But the rest are coming. They’ll be out of here quickly, right? Quickly.”
Later, Trump repeated a phrase that he had tweeted out earlier Friday, saying: “We’re going to enforce our laws, protect our borders and support our police like our police have never been supported before.”
He also referred to MS-13 gang members as “animals,” adding they have “transformed peaceful parks and beautiful quiet neighborhoods into blood stained killing fields.”
In response to the brutal attacks, rapes, and murders by its members across America, Trump declared, “We cannot tolerate as a society the spilling of innocent, young, wonderful vibrant people.”
Trump called out past administration for neglecting to enforce proper immigration laws and allowing the surge of criminals to enter the U.S.
“For many years, they exploited America’s weak borders and immigration enforcement,” Trump said. “They are there right now because of weak political leadership … and in many cases police who are not allowed to do their job because they have a pathetic mayor or a mayor who does not know what’s going on.”
Earlier on Friday, before departing for Long Island, Trump tweeted out a video clip from a rally wherein he condemned the Obama administration for allowing the MS-13 gang to infiltrate the United States.
Trump said during the rally, “The last, very weak administration allowed thousands and thousands of gang members to cross our borders and enter into our communities where they wreak havoc on our citizens. As you know, the blood-thirsty cartel known as MS-13 has infiltrated our schools, threatening innocent children. We’ve seen the horrible assaults and many killings all over Long Island.”
Trump touted the strength of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers going up against dangerous criminal gangs and encouraged law enforcement to use force and not be “too nice” before issuing a stark warning to immigrant criminals: “We will find you, we will arrest you, we will jail you and we will deport you,” Trump said.
He told the police officers, “We have your backs 100 percent, not like in the old days,” to which cheers and applause broke out.
The Trump administration is ramping up efforts to target MS-13, whose formal name is La Mara Salvatrucha, a gang initially formed in Los Angeles several decades ago with strongholds in the United States, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.
“We’re going to secure our border against illegal entry and we will build the wall, that I can tell you,” Trump said. “The wall is vital, and vital as a tool for ending the humanitarian disaster brought, and really brought on by drug smugglers and new words we haven’t heard too much of, human traffickers.”
Watch President Trump’s full speech below.
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