MS-13 gang members reported arrested in murder of Valley Stream man


Nassau County police arrested a second man on Aug. 15 in connection with the murder of a 19-year-old Valley Stream man whose body was discovered in March.

The remains of Julio Cesar Gonzales-Espantzay were discovered in the Massapequa Preserve, near Seaview and Ocean avenues, on March 23.

Carlos Portillo, 22, of Princeton Street in Hempstead, was arrested on July 29 in connection with what the Nassau County Police Department termed a homicide, according to a news release, and Kevin Granados-Coreas, 19, of 147th Road in Rosedale, Queens, was arrested on Aug. 15. Both were charged with second-degree murder. Portillo was arraigned on July 30, and Granados-Coreas, on Aug. 16, both in First District Court.

According to published reports, both Portillo and Granados-Coreas were members of the MS-13 gang, and the two beat, stabbed and shot Gonzales-Espantzay to try and advance in rank in the gang. His body was reportedly dumped in Massapequa two months before it was discovered. 

Detective Lt. Stephen Fitzpatrick, commanding officer of the NCPD’s Homicide Squad, said at a news conference on Aug. 16 that Granados-Coreas befriended Gonzales-Espantzay in late 2016. He was lured into a car with others on Jan. 28 by Granados-Coreas and Portillo, with the promise of marijuana and sexual favors, Fitzpatrick said, before being killed.

Fitzpatrick stressed that Gonzales-Espantzay was not believed to be an MS-13 gang member, and that the investigation would continue.

“We believe others were involved,” Fitzpatrick said.

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Bill Heidenreich, superintendent of the Central High School District, told the Herald in March that the district had no record of Gonzales-Espantzay attending its schools.