The authorities mentioned that they had classified the fatalities as a detest criminal activity following the stays of two lady comprise within a severely burned vehicle last week.
Weekly following the body of two transgender female happened to be present in a defectively burned vehicles in Puerto Rico, the authorities stated Thursday which they have arrested two people relating to the killings together with transformed all of them to the F.B.I.
The guys, Juan Carlos Pagan Bonilla, 21, and Sean Diaz de Leon, 19, are taken into custody on Wednesday but I have not become billed, according to Capt. Teddy Morales, the principle of criminal investigations for your police in Humacao, on Puerto Rico’s east shore, where women’s keeps were entirely on April 22.
The guy said the F.B.I. have bought out the outcome and is exploring Mr. Pagan Bonilla and Mr. Diaz de Leon for possible civil-rights violations.
“We is classifying it as a dislike criminal activity since they were interacting utilizing the victims, as soon as they realized these were transgender lady, they made a decision to kill all of them,” master Morales stated on Thursday.
Law enforcement stated they were awaiting autopsy brings about regulate how the ladies was basically murdered. Activists have actually identified the ladies as Layla Pelaez, 21, and Serena Angelique Velazquez, 32, two company who lived in nyc. Their own stays had been discover after an individual called 911 to report a burned car under a bridge on a desolate path in Humacao, prior to 5 a.m. on April 22, master Morales stated.
The guy said law enforcement had also fastened Mr. Pagan Bonilla and Mr. Diaz de Leon to your killings through surveillance camera footage and “scientific research,” that he declined to detail. Mr. Pagan Bonilla confessed to taking part in the killings, and Mr. Diaz de Leon transformed himself in, the guy said.
Limary Cruz-Rubio, a spokeswoman the F.B.I.’s San Juan field office, decreased to talk about the arrests but mentioned the agency consistently collaborates with local, state and federal firms.
Mr. Pagan Bonilla and Mr. Diaz de Leon couldn't right away become achieved for discuss Thursday night, plus it was not straight away obvious if they have solicitors.
When the men are charged, it could express a turning part of the managing of crimes against L.G.B.T.Q. people in Puerto Rico, with a disturbing reputation for assault against homosexual and transgender men and women, activists stated.
Ms. Velazquez and Ms. Pelaez had been the third and fourth transgender visitors slain in Puerto Rico within the last few two months, activists stated. These were also considered the seventh and 8th transgender or gender-nonconforming individuals have been killed in the usa this present year, according to research by the people liberties promotion.
In past times 15 period, 10 L.G.B.T.Q. people have been killed in Puerto Rico, based on Pedro Julio Serrano, a gay rights activist. Just about three from the fatalities stays unresolved, the guy stated.
“These arrests are a step when you look at the right direction, however these murders need to be prosecuted as hate crimes,” Mr. Serrano stated. “We desire the federal government to finish the research inside more seven murders of L.G.B.T.Q. anyone on isle and offer fairness for many of these.”
Ms. Velazquez lived-in Queens and Ms. Pelaez during the Bronx. Both have not too long ago moved to Puerto Rico, and are likely to fly back to ny later this period, relating to family relations and activists.
Luz Melendez, 29, Ms. Pelaez’s relative, said Mr. Pagan Bonilla and Mr. Diaz de Leon happened to be arrested after a nearby broadcast place published pictures ones on myspace and folks started initially to name the station to determine them.
“We become awesome appreciative for the efforts the officials together with neighborhood devote to find whom performed this,” she mentioned on Thursday.
She stated the images came from two films that Ms. Pelaez have submitted on the Snapchat and Facebook account, which demonstrated their and Ms. Velazquez interacting with Mr. Pagan Bonilla and Mr. Diaz de Leon.
“we spotted the movies, and it also appeared like they certainly were spending time together as pals,” she said. “It seemed typical. There is tunes playing when you look at the credentials. Folks felt great.”
She said the police got told her family just that the males comprise in federal guardianship.
The killings came monthly after Yampi Mendez Arocho, a 19-year-old transgender people, was actually slain in Moca, P.R., based on the people liberties strategy.
In February, Alexa Negron Luciano, a well-known figure on Puerto Rico social networking who was transgender and homeless, ended up being shot to death after a McDonald’s client reported that Ms. Negron got spied on the during the women’s room.
Ms. Negron’s best minutes — presented within the headlights of an automible amid a cackle of laughter — were submitted on social media marketing, a fact that activists mentioned underscored the impunity homophobic assailants feel whenever committing this type of criminal activities.