Twelve years ago, Jose Saenz was an LAUSD dropout and run-of-the-mill tagger known on the Eastside as Smiley, a nod to how much he enjoyed flashing his trademark brilliant grin. One day at age 22, he sidled up to two Eastside gangsters, pretending to be friend not foe. When Smiley got within point-blank range, he blew both young men away. Eleven days later, worried about a Prizzi's Honor-style scenario, Smiley grew convinced that those closest to him knew too much. He raped and executed his former girlfriend, mother of his two-year-old baby girl, and, horribly, left her ravaged body sprawled in his grandmother's bedroom.
Sigreda Fernandez pictured w/Smiley's baby. Murdered because he thought she knew too much
And then Smiley vanished -- to Mexico, the FBI says, where he morphed from a Cuatro Flats gang member to a Mexican cartel drug soldier. Many facts about what unfolded inside Mexico are unknown.
Smiley rose to operate in international drug smuggling circles. He sometimes used Tijuana bars as a base, crossing to the U.S. regularly with a bogus Mexican passport to do business with his gangster buddy Oscar Torres, owner of a Los Angeles Hummer limo service.
But Oscar, a high-stakes drug dealer himself, ended up on Smiley's kill list after cops in a small Missouri town pulled Oscar over one day in 2008, searched his car, found $600,000 in hidden cash -- and then, incredibly, let Oscar go without trying to figure out what he was up to. The cash, however, stayed in Missouri.
L.A. Weekly has obtained this video footage of the gruesome execution style killing of Oscar by Saenz. The shadowy, ethereal black and white surveillance video shows Saenz looking giddy and rubbing his hands gleefully before he is seen chasing Torres outside his two-bedroom home in the Pellissier Village Equestrian District in Whittier and executing him.
L.A. Weekly also obtained a copy of this song, "Bad Things," produced by Bogart Bello under his label Lott Records. The song is an homage to Bello's East Los Angeles gang called the Lott. Bello was found dead with a bag over his head in his car in a suburb of Los Angeles. Police believe FBI 10 Most Wanted Fugitive Jose Saenz may be responsible for his mysterious death. Listen and download the song by clicking below.
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