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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, December 19, 2014

Two Fresno Men Indicted For Firearm Possession After Being Convicted of A Felony

FRESNO, Calif. — A federal grand jury in Fresno returned two indictments yesterday charging two defendants with possessing a firearm after being convicted of a felony, United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.

According to the first indictment, officers conducted a probation search at the residence of Kenneth Benton, 26, of Fresno, and found a loaded 9mm Luger firearm on a shelf next to a bag containing 13 rounds of ammunition. Benton was convicted of felonies in Fresno County Superior Court in 2007, 2008, and 2014, and is prohibited from possessing a firearm. This case is the product of an investigation by the Fresno Police Department’s Violent Crime Impact Team (VCIT).

According to the second indictment, officers conducted a probation search of the residence of Juan Carlos Negrete, 23, of Fresno, and found a loaded 40‑caliber semi‑automatic handgun. Negrete was convicted of felonies in Fresno County Superior Court in 2011 and 2012 and is prohibited from possessing a firearm. This case is the product of an investigation by the Multi-Agency Gang Enforcement Consortium (MAGEC).

If convicted, Benton and Negrete each face up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables. The charges are only allegations; the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Assistant United States Attorney Laurel J. Montoya is prosecuting both cases.

Updated April 8, 2015