Five members of crime syndicate sentenced for robbery of jewelry wholesaler 

Five members of an internationally known crime syndicate were slapped with two-to-three-year prison terms Monday for the gunpoint robbery of a New York jewelry wholesaler in Burlingame last year. 

Jonathan Castro, 33, and Nicolas Granados Mojica, 32, were sentenced to three years in state prison, while three others — Jose Miguel Figueora, 33, Jesus Ortiz-Hernandez, 28, and Juan Felix Sanchez, 24 — received two years after pleading no contest to charges involving the Jan. 13, 2010 heist.

The case of a sixth suspect, Juan Martinez, who is accused of brandishing the gun during the robbery, has yet to be resolved.

The jewelry wholesaler was leaving the Crown Plaza Hotel with a duffel bag bulging with 300 trinkets worth $200,000 when he was allegedly accosted at gunpoint by two people working for a South American mob, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office.

The robbers allegedly waited for the New Yorker to stash the duffel bag in his trunk before approaching, guns in hand, from behind, according to officials.

The jeweler called Burlingame police right after the robbery, which was perfect timing, cops said, as two hours later they were called by a Los Angeles detective that was hunting the syndicate with an FBI task force.

Later that day, prosecutors said, authorities managed to track down two suspect cars in Los Angeles, one of which contained the New Yorker’s jewelry.

maldax@sfexaminer.com

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