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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Central District of California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, March 15, 2021

Palm Desert Man Pleads Guilty to Firebombing Republican Club

            LOS ANGELES – A Palm Desert man pleaded guilty today to a federal arson charge and admitted that he used a Molotov cocktail in an attempt to destroy the East Valley Republican Women Federated (EVRWF) office in La Quinta.

            Carlos Espriu, 23, who has been in custody since his arrest in this case last fall, pleaded guilty this afternoon to one count of attempted arson of a building.

            During the early morning hours of May 31, 2020, Espriu broke the front windows of the EVRWF headquarters and repeatedly tossed through the windows a lighted Molotov cocktail made of three bottles he had taped together.

            In his plea agreement, Espriu agreed to pay at least $5,426 in restitution to compensate the victim for the damage caused by the firebombing.

            Espriu pleaded guilty during a hearing on Zoom before United States District Judge Percy Anderson, who scheduled a sentencing hearing for May 24.

            The attempted arson charge carries a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in federal prison and statutory maximum sentence of 20 years.

            The investigation in this matter was conducted by the FBI’s Inland Empire Joint Terrorism Task Force.

            This matter is being prosecuted by Sara Milstein of the Violent and Organized Crime Section.

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Contact: 
Thom Mrozek Director of Media Relations thom.mrozek@usdoj.gov (213) 894-6947
Press Release Number: 
21-045
Updated March 15, 2021