Trial set in alleged MS-13 killing of dad, sons in San Francisco 

One of San Francisco’s most notorious murder cases in recent years — the 2008 slaying of a father and two of his sons by an alleged MS-13 gang member — is gearing up for trial next month.

Edwin Ramos, 24, of El Sobrante was arrested three days after the June 22, 2008, killing of Tony Bologna, 48, and two of his sons, Michael, 20, and Matthew, 16, who were shot dead in their car in The City’s Excelsior district while driving home from a picnic in Fairfield.

Jury selection is scheduled to begin June 6, according to defense attorneys, who say they have already reviewed more than 17,000 pages of evidence in the case — as well as CDs, videos and audio tapes — and are still receiving more.

Prosecutors have prepared a witness list of more than 140 people, including more than 80 police officers, according to the defense.

A closed-door hearing was scheduled Monday in San Francisco Superior Court, revolving around a police “gang expert” who will likely testify about Ramos’ relationship to MS-13.

Ramos’ attorney Marla Zamora insists her client had left the MS-13 clique based at 20th and Mission streets by early 2006. At least one former member is expected to testify that Ramos left the gang in order to join another MS-13 branch in the East Bay.

“Once he dropped out of 20th Street, I have no information he got into any other gang,” Zamora said Monday.

Police and prosecutors said the shootings may have been retaliation for the shooting of another alleged MS-13 member earlier that day in the Mission district, and that the Bolognas were mistaken for rival gang members.

Ramos claimed another man in his car that day was the gunman. The passenger, another alleged MS-13 member, has not been found.

Prosecutors have charged Ramos with three counts of murder, and a count of attempted murder, for another Bologna son who survived and identified Ramos as the shooter. If convicted, he would face life in prison without parole. Former District Attorney Kamala Harris declined to seek the death penalty.

The trial is sure to garner extensive media coverage not simply for the horror of the killings but because Ramos was in the country illegally at the time — having overstayed a tourist visa, according to his attorneys — and had been previously arrested multiple times, but never deported.

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Ari Burack

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