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May 25, 10

NEWS / Weslaco Man Sentenced to Prison for Carjacking

McALLEN, TX—Jesus Miguel Villarreal, 26, of Weslaco, Texas, has been sentenced to prison for carjacking, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today.

U.S. District Judge Randy Crane sentenced Villarreal to eight years and four months in federal prison without parole at a hearing this morning in federal court in McAllen.

Villarreal pleaded guilty on July 31, 2009, to carjacking—admitting that on March 7, 2008, he and two juveniles forced a women who was waiting in her car in the parking lot of a local video store out of her car at knife point. The victim suffered a minor cut as a result of the knife being pressed against her. Approximately two hours later, officers of the Weslaco Police Department engaged in a high-speed pursuit of the stolen vehicle which reached speeds of 120 miles per hour through a residential neighborhood. The pursuit ended when the vehicle got stuck in a canal bank.

In deciding upon Villarreal’s sentence, Judge Crane considered Villarreal used force, violence and intimidation to take the vehicle from the victim and the extent of Villarreal’s involvement in the carjacking—noting that Villarreal had been the one to drive off in the vehicle. Following completion of the 100 month-term of imprisonment, the court ordered Villarreal to serve a three-year term of supervised release and to pay restitution in the amount of $1600 to the victim.

Villarreal has been in federal custody without bond since his May 2008 arrest. He will remain in U.S. Marshal’s custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be designated in the near future where he will to serve his sentence.

This investigation leading to the charges against Villarreal was conducted by FBI with the assistance of Weslaco Police Department. Assistant United States Attorneys Leo J. Leo III prosecuted the case.




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