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Jan. 22, 2009


(MCALLEN, Texas) – Alfredo Rodriguez Jr., 20, Jose De La Luz Reyna, 22, and Aaron Ortiz, 20, have been sentenced to 84 months, 108 months and 27 months, respectively, for carjacking and conspiracy to carjack, acting United States Attorney Tim Johnson announced today. U.S. District Judge Ricardo Hinojosa sentenced the three residents of Mercedes, Texas, late Wednesday, Jan. 21. 
At the hearing, Rodriguez and Reyna were sentenced to nine and seven years, respectively, for carjacking, while Ortiz was sentenced to 27 months for conspiracy to carjack. All three are to serve a three-year-term of supervised released following completion of their prison terms. After hearing arguments from defense counsel and the government, Judge Hinojosa sentenced the three men for taking a motor vehicle from a male victim by the use of force, violence and intimidation. The court considered the extent of each defendant’s involvement in the carjacking, noting that Rodriguez and Reyna had physically beaten the man.

The three pleaded guilty to their respective charges Oct. 6, 2008. At that hearing, the United States presented evidence showing that on July 29, 2007, the victim was driving his vehicle on FM 491 in Mercedes when he pulled over to assist the defendants and two other individuals whose vehicle had run out of gas. He offered to take a female to a gas station in order for her to purchase gasoline for their vehicle. When the man returned, Rodriguez began beating him with a ball-peen hammer and Reyna began beating him with his hands and feet, all while Ortiz was putting the fuel in their vehicle. Shortly after, Reyna and Ortiz fled the scene in the man’s vehicle, while Rodriguez and the others fled in their own vehicle. The victim sustained several injuries which included a laceration to his head that required seven staple stitches.

The conviction for carjacking carries a punishment range of up to 15 years imprisonment, without parole, and a maximum fine of $250,000. Conspiracy to car jack is punishable by imprisonment of no more than five years and a maximum $250,000 fine.

This investigation leading to the charges against Rodriguez, Reyna and Ortiz was conducted by FBI with the assistance of Mercedes Police Department and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Leo J. Leo III.



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