Salvadoran official: Gangs buying high-powered rifles, trying to get military training

A Salvadoran official says the country's street gangs are arming themselves with high-powered rifles and that some members have tried to join the army to get military training.

Public Safety Minister Ricardo Perdomo says the main Mara street gangs are buying the automatic rifles in the black market in Honduras and Guatemala, and from the Zetas drug cartel.

Perdomo told TCS television network Friday that authorities recently arrested a person in downtown San Salvador who sold gang members 15 M-16 rifles. He said he couldn't give any other details because there is an open investigation.

Perdomo said army recruiters recently detained 26 gang members who tried to join the military. They said it was part of a plan to get military training and then steal military uniforms and weapons.