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Press Release

New York Man Sentenced To Five Years In Prison For Robbing, Attempting To Burglarize Four New Jersey Banks

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Jersey

TRENTON, N.J. – A Manhattan man was sentenced today to 60 months in prison for robbing banks in Jackson Township, Fort Lee, and Hasbrouck Heights, as well as attempting to burglarize a fourth bank in Englewood between December 2013 and February 2017, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.

Eddy Cruz, 42, previously pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Peter G. Sheridan to an information charging him with three counts of bank robbery and one count of attempted bank burglary. Judge Sheridan imposed the sentence today in Trenton federal court.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

On Dec. 24, 2013, Cruz entered a PNC Bank in Jackson Township and handed a bank teller a note demanding money. After the teller handed him some cash, Cruz fled the scene. Cruz also robbed a TD Bank in Fort Lee on Feb. 13, 2017, and a TD Bank in Hasbrouck Heights on Feb. 18, 2017. During both robberies, Cruz wore a mask to disguise his identity and handed the tellers notes demanding cash.

On Feb. 24, 2017, law enforcement officers tracked Cruz’s car, which had been spotted at one of the earlier bank robberies, to a location in Manhattan. That same day, Cruz drove to yet another TD Bank in Englewood where he was apprehended moments before he robbed the bank in a similar disguise to what he wore during the previous two bank robberies.

In addition to the prison term, Judge Sheridan sentenced Cruz to three years of supervised release and ordered him to pay restitution of $10,556.

U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents with the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Gregory W. Ehrie in Newark and Special Agent in Charge John Brosnan in New York; the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Acting Prosecutor Dennis Calo; the Fort Lee Police Department, under the direction of Chief Keith M. Bendul; the Hasbrouck Heights Police Department, under the direction of Chief Michael J. Colaneri; the Roxbury Police Department, under the direction of Chief Marc Palanchi; the Paramus Police Department, under the direction of Chief Kenneth Ehrenberg; and the Jackson Township Police Department, under the direction of Chief Matthew Kunz, with the investigation leading to today’s sentencing. He also thanked the Greenburgh, New York, Mount Pleasant, New York, and Yonkers, New York, police departments, as well as the New York Police Department for their assistance.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joshua L. Haber of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Criminal Division in Newark

Defense counsel: Linda Foster Esq., Assistant Federal Public Defender, Newark

Updated November 27, 2018

Press Release Number: 18-412