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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Colorado

Friday, June 19, 2015

Man found guilty of first degree murder at ADX sentenced to serve life in prison

DENVER – Silvestre Rivera, age 57, an inmate at ADX in Florence, Colorado, was sentenced today by U.S. District Court Judge Robert E. Blackburn to serve life in prison for the murder of Manuel Torrez.  The life sentence was mandatory based on his First Degree Murder conviction.  Rivera, and co-defendant Richard Santiago, murdered fellow inmate Torrez on April 21, 2005 while the three were exercising in the recreation area that is part of the ADX’s general population unit.

Rivera was convicted of First Degree Murder following a two week jury trial.  The jury delivered the guilty verdict on April 21, 2015.  During testimony at Rivera’s trial, it was determined that Rivera, Santiago and Torrez were all part of the Mexican Mafia.  Torrez and Santiago arrived at ADX in 2000.  Shortly after Rivera’s arrival, Torrez was killed.

Defendant Richard Santiago, age 55, also an inmate at ADX, is pending trial before Judge Blackburn, although no trial date has yet been set.  Santiago is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

The Rivera case was investigated by the FBI.  Rivera and Santiago are being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney’s Valeria Spencer and M.J. Menendez.

Updated July 6, 2015