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September 4, 09

NEWS / Six Plead Guilty to Consipracy in Connection with $3.7 Million Jewelry Robbery

COLUMBUS—Six Los Angeles, California men involved in the multi-million dollar robbery of a jewelry merchant attending a trade show here pleaded guilty in United States District Court today to one count of conspiracy to interfere with interstate commerce (Hobbs Act), punishable by up to 20 years imprisonment.

William E. Hunt, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio; Keith L. Bennett, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and Westerville Police Chief Joseph Morbitzer announced the pleas entered today before U.S. District Judge Gregory L. Frost.

The following men entered guilty pleas:

Donald Jose Bonilla-Canales, 34, aka Carlos Alvarez-Guttierrez;
Yhariel Allesandro Roverando-Mondragon, 37, aka Jose Ray Amaya;
Oscar Ferero, 27, aka Oscar Alex Foredo;
Bernardo Sanchez-Perez, 35;
Fernando Patino Cruz, 23, aka Julio Angel Casiano-Ruiz, aka Giovanni Rodriguez; and
Kevin Ismael Miranda, 29, aka Jefferson Pinzon.
On April 3, 2009 a vendor who had been attending a jewelry show at the Ohio State Fairgrounds stopped at a Westerville restaurant. While he was sitting in the car, a vehicle pulled behind him and boxed him in. A masked robber shattered the victim’s driver side window and two other robbers broke the back window of the vehicle. The two robbers reached into the back seat and grabbed two black suitcases containing the victim’s jewelry.

Three days later, Westerville police detectives, with the assistance of FBI agents and Passaic County New Jersey Sheriff’s deputies, arrested the men at a hotel in Wayne, New Jersey and recovered the jewelry with an appraised value of $3,723,184. All six have been in custody since their arrests.

Hunt commended the investigation by Westerville detectives and FBI agents, who were assisted by the New York Police Department and local New Jersey law enforcement agencies, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Salvador A. Dominguez, who is prosecuting the case.

Judge Frost will set a date for sentencing.




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