Waco: Man Sentenced For Illegal Export Of Military Items

By: Paul J. Gately Email
By: Paul J. Gately Email

WACO (November 29, 2012)--A naturalized U.S. citizen from India was sentenced to federal prison Wednesday after he earlier pleaded guilty to illegally exporting Department of Defense property.

U.S. District Judge Walter S. Smith in Waco sentenced Yusuf Pantanwala to serve 3 years each on two counts, both to be served concurrently.

Smith also sentenced Pantanwala to serve two concurrent three-year terms on supervised release after his prison time is completed, to pay a $2,000 fine and $200 in special assessment to the court.

Earlier this month Smith sentenced Daniel C. Alejandre to serve 18 months on each of two counts of possession of stolen government property, the sentences to be served concurrently, ordered him to serve two terms of three years-each on supervised release, also to be served concurrently, assessed a $1,000 fine and $200 in special assessment to the court.

Smith already has sentenced Edward Russo to one year and one day in federal prison to be followed by three years on supervised release, ordered him to pay a $1,000 fine and a $100 special assessment to the court.

Court documents show Pantanwala participated with, Alejandre, Russo, Angeligue McRae, Joel Robert Stone and Michael Bartch, Sr., to steal and conceal military property valued at more than $1,000, which they knew to be stolen.

On Nov. 7, Smith rejected McRae's guilty plea and ordered her to stand trial.

Smith heard the guilty plea from McRae, also known as Angelique Cobbs-Nije, but rejected it and set a trial date.

Court documents indicate Stone and Bartch have pleaded guilty to the same charge are all are set for sentencing within the next few weeks.

The charges say the group exported at least three articles of defense equipment called AN/PEQ 15 Advanced Target Pointer Illuminator Aiming Lasers.

Prosecutors said the group planned to sell the lasers to foreign buyers.

The equipment is included on the Department of Defense munitions list.

The charges further state the equipment was offered for sale using Internet-based PayPal accounts.

The remaining defendants face three counts each that could result in federal prison sentences of as much as 20 years and fines of as much as $1 million.

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