It is now a major international criminal enterprise.
Miguel Alvarez-Flores, 22, and Diego Hernandez-Rivera, 18, members of the notorious MS-13 gang from El Salvador, have been arrested and charged with aggravated kidnapping and murder - both first-degree felonies punishable by up to life in prison.
Bonds totalling 300,000 dollars (£244,000) have been set for each, but an order from Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials will keep them behind bars.
It will be part of the Department of Homeland Security.
"The majority of the MS-13 members we come into contact with are here illegally," Sgt Sturdivant said.
The captives were three "young, impressionable women" aged 14 to 16 who succumbed to the allure of gang life before being taken to an apartment and held against their will, Sgt Sturdivant said.
A 14-year-old girl told investigators they were fed drugs and alcohol and forced to have sex.Convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines.Some offenses committed overseas can be prosecuted in the United States, regardless of local law.The dead included three high school students, including two girls, who were killed with a machete and baseball bats as they walked through their suburban neighbourhood.Thirteen members of local cliques of the MS-13 gang were charged with a series of violent crimes and seven killings over a five-year period.Not only are counterfeit goods illegal in the United States -- if you purchase them, you may also be breaking local law. Local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting the crime. If you violate Salvadoran laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned.