Felon sentenced to 100 months in prison for possession of a firearm
DENVER – Daniel S. Prieto, age 33, was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Court Judge R. Brooke Jackson to serve 100 months (over 8 years) in federal prison for possession of a firearm by a prohibited person, United States Attorney John Walsh and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Special Agent in Charge Andrew Traver announced. After serving his prison sentence, Judge Jackson ordered Prieto to serve 3 years on supervised release. Prieto, who appeared at the hearing in custody, was remanded at the conclusion of the hearing.
Prieto and co-defendant Saul Galvan, age 26, were indicted by a federal grand jury in Denver on December 4, 2012. Each faces one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. Prieto requested a jury trial. That trial started on March 11, 2013, before Judge Jackson. That same day, in Judge Jackson’s courtroom, co-defendant Galvan pled guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm. Galvan was sentenced that same day by Judge Jackson to serve 21 months in federal prison, followed by 3 years on supervised release. On March 13, 2013, following a three-day jury trial, Prieto was convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm.
According to court documents, including a sentencing statement filed by the government, on August 3, 2012, a Greely Police Officer, who was parked at a street corner, heard the music from a vehicle from over 100 yards away. The officer then pulled over the vehicle for a violation of a Greeley Municipal Ordinance for loud music as it passed his location. The driver, Prieto, and passenger, Galvan occupied the vehicle. When the officer approached the vehicle he observed a glass pipe with white residue in the center console area of the vehicle. The officer assumed that the white residue was methamphetamine based on his experience. In addition, the officer observed an open box of beer bottles inside the vehicle and could smell the odor of alcohol.
Based on the pipe and alcohol as probable cause, officers pulled the defendants out of the vehicle. Officers on both sides of the vehicle observed firearms between the seats and their respective doors. The firearm located by Galvan was a Hi-Point .45 caliber pistol with one .45 caliber round of ammunition in the chamber. The firearm located by Prieto was a Jimenez Arms .380 caliber pistol with a fully loaded magazine and one round of ammunition in the chamber. Record checks determined that Prieto and Galvan were prior convicted felons. Both were then transported to jail.
“Felons in possession of firearms will be prosecuted, and face stiff prison sentences that take years of their life away from them and their families,” said U.S. Attorney John Walsh. “Thanks to the Greeley Police Department and the ATF, two felons sitting in a car in possession of firearms are now sitting in federal prison.”
“This investigation illustrates the collaborative effort of law enforcement agencies at the federal, state, and local levels working together to keep crime guns out of the hands of convicted felons,” said Special Agent in Charge Andrew Traver, ATF Denver Field Division. “We will continue to combine resources to protect our citizens and make our communities a safer place to live.”
This case was investigated by the Greely Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF).
Prieto and Galvan were prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeremy Sibert.