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Press Release

Albuquerque Felon Sentenced to Prison for Unlawfully Possessing Firearm and Ammunition

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Mexico
Defendant Prosecuted Under Federal “Worst of the Worst” Anti-Violence Initiative

ALBUQUERQUE – Francisco Roberto Esquibel, Jr., 34, of Albuquerque, N.M., was sentenced today in federal court to 80 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release for unlawfully possessing a firearm and ammunition. 

Esquibel was charged in a criminal complaint filed on June 11, 2015, with being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.  The complaint alleged that Esquibel unlawfully possessed a stolen firearm at his residence in Albuquerque on June 10, 2015.  According to the complaint, the Albuquerque Police Department (APD) found the firearm while arresting Esquibel on an outstanding warrant. 

Esquibel was subsequently indicted on July 31, 2015.  According to the indictment, Esquibel was prohibited from possessing firearms or ammunition because he previously had been convicted of numerous felony crimes, including conspiracy to commit armed robbery, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, felon in possession of a firearm, receiving or transferring a stolen motor vehicle, and possession of controlled substance with intent to distribute.

On Feb. 11, 2016, Esquibel pled guilty to the indictment without the benefit of a plea agreement. 

This case was investigated by the Albuquerque office of Homeland Security Investigations and APD.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Jacob Wishard prosecuted the case as part of a federal anti-violence initiative that targets “the worst of the worst” offenders for federal prosecution.  Under this initiative, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and federal law enforcement agencies work with New Mexico’s District Attorneys and state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies to target violent or repeat offenders primarily based on their prior criminal convictions for federal prosecution with the goal of removing repeat offenders from communities in New Mexico for as long as possible.  Because New Mexico’s violent crime rate, on a per capita basis, is one of the highest in the nation, New Mexico’s law enforcement community is collaborating to target repeat and violent offenders, primarily based on their prior convictions, from counties with the highest violent crime rates under this initiative.

Updated July 7, 2016