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Judge sentences man to 223 years to life in alleged Nuestra Familia kidnapping

Posted on in Criminal Defense

The man was not accused of being present during the alleged kidnapping event. Authorities had claimed that the man was the leader of a Nuestra Familia street gang regiment. Prosecutors argued that the man had ordered others to make an example of a person who allegedly had failed to pay for drugs that had been advanced to him.

Prosecutors apparently brought witnesses in to court to testify at trial against the alleged San Jose gang leader. The witnesses reportedly included those people who allegedly had participated in the kidnapping. The witnesses could have faced their own life sentences for the alleged offense, but apparently were given deals for testifying that will reduce their own exposure to prison time to 15 to 24 years.

The prosecutors had alleged that the kidnapping victim escaped from a moving van while it was traveling on Capitol Expressway. The van reportedly fled the area before police and emergency responders could respond to 911 calls describing the expressway incident.

The man convicted of ordering the kidnapping event previously had faced a three strikes sentence. However, in 2004, a California judge set aside two strikes at sentencing to allow the man to avoid a three strikes sentence. In that case, the San Jose man had been accused of being a felon in possession of a firearm. The prosecutors also brought gang enhancements in that case.

Source: Pasadena Star-News, "San Jose gang leader nicknamed 'Capone' sentenced to 223 years to life for violent kidnapping," Tracey Kaplan, May 4, 2012

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