A Philadelphia man who was on his way to rob what he believed was a drug stash house in New York but was arrested at a New Jersey Turnpike service plaza after his SUV broke down was sentenced Friday to five years in prison, prosecutors said.
Luis Almonte, 37, and Jorge Oviedo-Difo, 30, also of Philadelphia, were found guilty by a Middlesex County jury in June on charges of illegal possession of a handgun, a large capacity ammunition magazine, and bullets that can penetrate body armor. Oviedo-Difo, who was tried in absentia and remains a fugitive, additionally was found guilty of heroin possession.
Investigators identified Almonte and Oviedo-Difo as members of a burglary ring. Officials said a confidential informant convinced the two defendants that there was a stash house full of drugs and cash in New York that could be heisted. The stash house, however, was part of a sting operation.