Score:   1
Docket Number:   D-NV  2:16-cr-00324
Case Name:   USA v. Mendoza
  Press Releases:
LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Today marks the one-year anniversary of the most tragic day in our city’s history. The United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Nevada joins our community in remembering everyone who lost their lives as a result of the senseless act committed on October 1, 2017. Earlier today, the United States Attorney’s Office, together with the United States Marshal for the District of Nevada, held a ceremony to honor and remember the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival victims, survivors, and the brave first responders who risked it all. The United States Attorney’s Office remains steadfastly committed to making our community safer and preventing future tragedies. Our community must be protected from violent criminals who terrorize our residents and visitors alike.

With the support of the United States Department of Justice, we have hired three additional prosecutors who are focused on identifying and prosecuting violent offenders, including prosecuting persons who: unlawfully possess firearms, including individuals with domestic violence convictions, commit robberies, with and without firearms, commit car-jackings and assaults, as well as kidnappers and murderers. The addition of new prosecutors allows the United States Attorney’s Office to target the most violent criminals including street gangs that destroy our neighborhoods and drug trafficking organizations that peddle their poison to our children.

Critical to our violent crime reduction effort is the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) program, a nationwide initiative that brings together federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement officials, prosecutors, and community leaders to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in a community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. On October 5, 2017, Attorney General Jeff Sessions reprioritized and enhanced the PSN program, making it the centerpiece of the Department’s violent crime reduction strategy.

Project Safe Neighborhoods empowers each United States Attorney’s office to develop and implement targeted, localized violent crime reduction strategies, tailoring solutions to individual communities and the challenges they face. So far in 2018, the United States Attorney’s Office prosecuted 123 cases including the following violent crime and firearm offenses, all which came in through our PSN program. Recent notable cases include:

Josue Diaz-Orellana, Luis Reyes-Castillo, David Perez-Manchame, and Miguel Torres-Escobar, all El Salvadoran nationals who are illegally in the United States and alleged to be MS-13 gang members, were arrested and charged in connection with the kidnapping and murder of a rival gang member whose body was found on federal property in southern Nevada. The maximum statutory penalty is 20 years in prison for the assault charge and life imprisonment for both the kidnapping and the discharging of a firearm count.

Uriah Crain, a Las Vegas felon, was sentenced to 18 years in prison for his involvement in two violent armed carjackings that resulted in injury to two victims.

Samual Lane Donesing and Jaemillah Eagans, both of Las Vegas, were indicted for possession of more than 300 stolen firearms belonging to a Federal Firearms Licensee. Donesing is also charged with felon in possession of a firearm. The maximum statutory penalty is 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each count.

Joseph Michael Gill, a former DEA Supervisory Special Agent in Tucson, Arizona, pleaded guilty to illegally selling firearms without a Federal Firearms License. He faces the maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Omar Qazi, a Las Vegas felon, was convicted by a jury of illegal possession of a firearm. He faces the maximum statutory penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Connor Woods and Michael Miller, both of Santa Rosa, California, were each sentenced to 13 years in prison for robbing a Reno convenience store at gunpoint.

Paul Nelson, of Pahrump, was sentenced to 15 years in prison for selling a stolen revolver and a stolen semi-automatic rifle with a large capacity magazine.

Charles Ellis, of North Las Vegas, was indicted for illegally purchasing and reselling firearms, including assault rifles, without a Federal Firearms License. He faces the maximum statutory penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Richard Canterbury, of Las Vegas, was sentenced to more than 10 years in prison for robbing a bank in the Southern Highlands area after escaping from a Bureau of Prisons facility in Arizona.

Jacqueline Moore, a Las Vegas felon, was convicted by a jury of unlawful possession of a .25 caliber pistol and ammunition. She faces the maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in prison and a $500,000 fine.

Jose Valentin Mora; Sandy Diaz Tavares; Jose Vega; Angel Diaz; Javier Chavez; Shawn Curl; Marcos Hernandez; Roberto Mora-Mora; Juana Baca; Elizabeth Reyes-Delacerda; Richard Rossall; Ciara Hernandez; Marco Antonio Ramirez; Kelsea Barbara Riley; Leon DeJesus Munera; and Jorge Ayala-Chavez, all of Reno, Nevada; and Francisco Meza Recio, of Simi Valley, California, were indicted for conspiracy to distribute large quantities of methamphetamine, cocaine, and heroin in Reno and elsewhere. Each defendant faces the maximum statutory penalty of life in prison and a fine of $10,000,000. The three-related indictments charge Jose Valentin Mora, Jose Vega, Jose Mora-Silva, Dagoberto Mora-Silva, and Alberto Acosta-Macias with firearms offenses. Felons Jose Mora and Jose Vega are charged with unlawful possession of a firearm after having a prior felony conviction in Nevada. Jose Mora-Silva is charged with unlawful possession of a firearm while being an alien unlawfully in the United States. Dagoberto Mora-Silva is charged with aiding and abetting the possession of a firearm by prohibited persons Jose Mora and Jose Mora-Silva. Jose Mora and Acosta-Macias are charged with possession of a stolen .22 caliber Marlin rifle. Each defendant faces the maximum statutory penalty of 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

Ronald Robinson, of Reno, was sentenced to over 18 years in prison for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and possession of a .40 caliber pistol.

Jessie Mendoza, of Henderson, was sentenced to more than six years in prison for stealing approximately $123,000 worth of jewelry and other property from a pawn shop.

Sylvester Mitchell, of Las Vegas, was charged for selling hundreds of firearms, some of which were subsequently used in crimes, without a Federal Firearms License. He faces the maximum term of five years in prison.

Jamie Joe Dulus, of Henderson, was sentenced to more than six years in prison for firing multiple shots at security guards at the Las Vegas Boat Harbor Marina.

 

Under PSN, federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and prosecutors partner with each other and the communities they serve to drive down violent crime – and it is working. The FBI’s Uniform Crime Report for 2017 reflects that the staggering increases from 2015 and 2016 are slowing. Preliminary data from 61 large cities suggest that violent crime overall was down in those cities in the first six months of 2018 compared to 2017. The overall violent crime rate in those cities is down nearly five percent and murder is down more than six percent. Thanks to the good work of law enforcement, Las Vegas’s violent crime reduction rate is impressive. According to the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department 2017 Annual Report, violent crimes decreased by 27%. Specifically, compared to last year, aggravated assault is down by 30%, robbery is down by 32%, and auto theft is down by 10%. While the national trend in the number of homicides is decreasing, Las Vegas is also unique in that it has seen an increase in homicide, to include domestic-violence related homicides. Our office, together with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement are all committing to reducing the numbers of homicides.

Based on the overall reduction in violent crime, there are good reasons to be optimistic that our efforts will be successful. To that end, our office is stepping up efforts to reduce the number of homicides. We have implemented a strategy to take additional firearms cases involving individuals who have domestic violence convictions, and those who are present in this county illegally and have violent criminal histories. Together with our partners, we have good reason to be optimistic that the efforts to reduce violent crime will pay off.

The United States Attorney’s Office grieves with and supports Las Vegas, the families that lost so much just one year ago, and the survivors who will continue on their road to recovery. Our grief focuses our resolve to combat violent crime and to make our community a safer place. Through our partnerships with law enforcement, community leaders and others, we will work steadfastly to identify violent criminals and bring them to justice. Because together, we are stronger.

For more information about PSN and the Department’s efforts to reduce violent crime, visit www.justice.gov/usao-nv.

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LAS VEGAS, Nev. – A Henderson man who wore a “Jason”-style hockey mask during the robbery of a Las Vegas pawn shop and stole nearly $125,000 worth of jewelry was sentenced today to 78 months in prison and three years of supervised release, announced U.S. Attorney Dayle Elieson.

After a four-day jury trial in September 2017, Jessie Mendoza, 38, was found guilty of one count of conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery and one count of interference with commerce by robbery. United States District Judge Larry R. Hicks presided over the trial and sentencing hearing.

According to court documents and trial evidence, Mendoza helped coordinate the robbery of EZ Pawn located at 3010 South Valley View Blvd. in Las Vegas. On September 12, 2016, Mendoza entered the pawn store and smashed the jewelry case with a sledgehammer. Mendoza stood guard at the front door wearing a “Jason”-style hockey mask and threatened the victims by swearing and waiving a firearm. He and his co-conspirators stole $122,936.50 worth of high value rings, jewelry, watches, gems, and other property from display cases. Mendoza was later identified when his DNA was located on the hockey mask and other items of clothing he discarded after the robbery. Law enforcement recovered video surveillance of Mendoza dumping his disguise, and then fleeing with his co-defendants in a switch car.

The case was investigated by the FBI’s Safe Streets Task Force, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, and the Henderson Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Cristina D. Silva and Kilby Macfadden prosecuted the case.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. Attorney General Jeff Sessions reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

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LAS VEGAS, Nev. – After a three-day trial, a jury convicted a man who wore a “Jason” style hockey mask during a robbery of a Las Vegas pawn shop, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Steven W. Myhre for the District of Nevada.

 

Jessie Mendoza, 38, of Henderson, Nev., was found guilty of one count of conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery and one count of interference with commerce by robbery. United States District Judge Larry R. Hicks presided over the jury trial and scheduled sentencing for Dec. 7, 2017.

 

According to the criminal complaint and indictment, on Sept. 12, 2016, Mendoza and his co-conspirators conspired with each other to rob an EZ Pawn store at 3010 South Valley View Blvd. in Las Vegas. During the robbery, Mendoza acted as a lookout at the front entrance to the store while his co-conspirators stole rings, jewelry, watches, gems, and other property from display cases. They stole approximately $123,000 worth of high value jewelry items and watches.

 

At the time of sentencing, the defendant faces a statutory maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

 

The case was investigated by the FBI’s Safe Streets Task Force, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, and the Henderson Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Cristina D. Silva and Kilby Macfadden prosecuted the case.

 

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a nationwide commitment by the Department of Justice to reduce gun and gang crime in America by networking local programs that target gun and gun crime and providing these programs with additional tools necessary to be successful. For more information about Project Safe Neighborhoods, visit www.justice.gov/usao-nv.

 

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Docket (0 Docs):   https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/16hG_BfWX7XbbO1YdRK4yNn5AsLylp3_d1QqSb-MtRVw/edit#gid=0
  Last Updated: 2019-11-28 08:03:10 UTC
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