NEWARK, N.J. – A Newark man was sentenced today to 360 months in prison for his role in the September 2017 armed robbery of a jewelry exchange in Elizabeth, New Jersey, Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael Honig announced.
William Valentin, 43, was previously found guilty of one count of conspiring to commit Hobbs Act robbery, one count of Hobbs Act robbery, one count of brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence, and one count of conspiring to use a firearm during a crime of violence. Valentin was convicted following a six-day trial before U.S. District Judge Madeline Cox Arleo, who imposed the sentence today in Newark federal court.
According to documents filed in this case and the evidence at trial:
On the morning of Sept. 5, 2017, four masked individuals, led by Valentin, entered a jewelry exchange located in Elizabeth. Valentin brandished a firearm at an employee while the other conspirators unloaded the contents of the store’s safes into large bags. Video surveillance showed Valentin and other conspirators entering the mall, approaching the jewelry exchange, and running out with the bags of jewelry. Afterwards, Valentin and his conspirators drove away in a black Audi. In January 2018, Valentin was arrested in Holyoke, Massachusetts, with a backpack containing jewelry stolen from the Elizabeth exchange in his possession.
In addition to the prison term, Judge Arleo sentenced Valentin to five years of supervised release.
Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr., in Newark; the Elizabeth Police Department, under the direction of Chief Giacomo Sacca; and the Union County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Prosecutor William A. Daniel, with the investigation. She also thanked the Holyoke Police Department, under the direction of Chief Manny Febo, for its assistance in the case.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Lauren E. Repole and Cari Fais of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Newark.