LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Andrew Joseph Sanders, 28, of Las Vegas, was sentenced on Friday, August 28, by Chief U.S. District Judge Miranda Du to five years in federal prison for lighting two separate fires at The Drew Las Vegas, announced U.S. Attorney Nicholas A. Trutanich of the District of Nevada and Special Agent in Charge Patrick Gorman of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
According to court documents, on March 1, 2018, Sanders trespassed onto the property of The Drew Las Vegas, a resort and casino that was under construction. While on the property, Sanders recorded himself on his cell phone and also narrated. In one video, Sanders stated: “and I lit a fire to this [expletive]. I’m just bored, you know?”
Sanders set two separate fires inside a building, approximately 200 yards apart from one another. After setting the fires and while attempting to flee, Sanders “squared off” in a fighting stance with two firefighters who responded from the Clark County Fire Department. The firefighters had to subdue Sanders and convince him to stop fighting. As a result, those two firefighters were delayed in supplying water to their colleagues inside the building. The fires set by Sanders caused millions of dollars in damage.
Sanders pleaded guilty to one count of arson in October 2019. In addition to the term of imprisonment, he was sentenced to three years of supervised release. The court will determine defendant’s obligation to pay restitution and any amount owing at a later date.
The case is a product of an investigation by the ATF and Clark County Fire Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica Oliva prosecuted the case.
Anonymous tips may be submitted to ATF through the ReportIt mobile app or by calling the ATF Tip Line at 1-888-ATF-TIPS.