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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Rhode Island

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, January 31, 2019

Target Store Break-in Defendants Sentenced

PROVIDENCE, RI – The second of two New York men who admitted to cutting their way through a roof into a Target department store in Smithfield, R.I., in October 2017, prying open an ATM inside the store and stealing more than $14,000, then cutting through a wall into a CVS Pharmacy located inside the store and stealing a controlled substance was sentenced today in federal court to time served.

Liridon Gashi, 33, of Bronx, NY, had been held in federal custody since his arrest on March 7, 2018.  He pleaded guilty on September 7, 2018, to one count each of conspiracy to commit larceny from a financial institution, bank larceny, conspiracy to commit burglary involving controlled substances, and burglary involving controlled substances.

At sentencing, U.S. District Court Chief Judge William E. Smith also ordered Gashi to serve 3 years supervised release and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $6,500 for damage to the ATM. Gashi remains detained on unrelated charges brought by law enforcement in Pennsylvania.

A co-defendant in this matter, Epirot Krasniqi, 27, of Brooklyn, NY, was arrested on November 7, 2017. Krasniqi pleaded guilty on May 11, 2018, to one count each of conspiracy to commit larceny from a financial institution, bank larceny, conspiracy to commit burglary involving controlled substances, and burglary involving controlled substances. He was sentenced by U.S. District Court Chief Judge William E. Smith on January 11, 2019, to time served, 3 years supervised release, and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $6,500 for damage to the ATM.

Krasniqi remains detained on unrelated charges brought by law enforcement in Pennsylvania.

The sentences are announced by United States Attorney Aaron L. Weisman, Smithfield Police Chief Richard P. St. Sauveur, Jr., and Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Boston Division Joseph R. Bonavolonta.

According to court documents, in the early morning hours of October 10, 2017, Gashi and Krasniqi, equipped with hand tools and two-way radios, cut through the roof of the Target store and then forced open an ATM from which they stole $14,720. The two men then cut through the wall of a CVS Pharmacy inside the store, broke open a locked cabinet holding controlled substances and stole a prescription package of Oxycodone. The two men then fled to the roof of the store.

While the burglary and robbery were taking place, Smithfield police officers responded to a report of an electronic burglary alarm and began to search the premises. After discovering the hole in the roof, officers began searching approximately 30 air conditioning units located on the roof. The two men were found hiding inside separate air conditioning units. Also discovered inside the store and in various air conditioning units on the roof were the tools used in the break-in of the store and the ATM, the cash stolen from the ATM, and the drugs stolen from the pharmacy.

The cases were prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ly T. Chin.

The matter was investigated by the Smithfield Police Department, with the assistance of the FBI Rhode Island Safe Streets Task Force.

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Component(s): 
Contact: 
Jim Martin (401) 709-5357
Press Release Number: 
19-7
Updated January 31, 2019