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Citibank Robber Sentenced to 19.5 Years in Federal Prison/ Co-defendant Enters Guilty Plea

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 22, 2010

Las Vegas, Nev. – A felon who pleaded guilty to robbing a Las Vegas bank last June has been sentenced to almost 20 years in federal prison, announced Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada. His co-defendant pleaded guilty Friday, and also faces serious penalties.

Frank Edward Morales, 40, of North Las Vegas, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Philip M. Pro on March 17, 2010, to 19.5 years in prison and five years of supervised release. Morales pleaded guilty on December 23, 2009, to conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery, armed bank robbery and brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence. Co-defendant Nathan Ray Dent, 39, of Las Vegas, pleaded guilty on Friday, March 19, 2010, to conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery, armed bank robbery and brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence, and is scheduled to be sentenced on June 21, 2010.

According to the court records, on June 16, 2009, at about 5 p.m., Morales and Dent entered a Citibank at 103 South Rainbow Boulevard in Las Vegas. Morales approached the teller stations with a revolver, and Dent stood near the door with a semi-automatic pellet gun. Pointing his firearm at bank employees and customers, Morales ordered everyone in the bank to the floor and ordered the tellers to give him money. The tellers complied, and Morales took the money from each of their stations, and also took money and a cell phone from a male customer and a purse from a female customer. Morales and Dent then fled from the bank in a red Honda Civic and drove to a park. After observing a police vehicle, Morales and Dent fled again in the vehicle, striking another vehicle nearby and then crashing into two oncoming vehicles. Morales fled on foot, and was almost immediately apprehended by law enforcement with the assistance of a K-9 police dog. Dent was also immediately apprehended. Officers recovered from the vehicle the revolver, semi-automatic pellet gun, approximately $9,400 in cash, the purse belonging to the female bank customer, and the cell phone belonging to the male customer.

Morales has a prior conviction for robbery in 1999 in Clark County.

The case was investigated by the FBI and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul S. Padda.

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