HOUSTON – A 28-year-old Houston man has been ordered to federal prison following his conviction of one count of aiding and abetting the burglary of a federal firearm licensee (FFL), announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.
Robert Louis Thomas pleaded guilty Oct. 16, 2018.
Today, U.S. District Judge George C. Hanks ordered him to serve 62 months which will be immediately followed by three years of supervised release. He was further ordered to pay $14,624 in restitution.
In imposing the sentence, Judge Hanks noted this is a very serious crime and that there are still guns on the street because of what Thomas and others did.
Co-defendants Cedric Howard Duncan, 32, and Charles Bernard Byrd, 28, both also of Houston, pleaded guilty to the same charge and were previously sentenced to 36 months and 42 months, respectively
On Dec. 18, 2017. Thomas and Duncan burglarized Big Bucks Gun and Pawn, an FFL located at 2201 Bypass 35 N in Alvin. They gained access by using a sledgehammer to break a hole in the wall and ultimately stole 13 firearms.
Byrd admitted he was the get-away driver. He also acknowledged selling 11 of the firearms that ended up in his trunk. The other two firearms were recovered shortly following the burglary after they were abandoned near a dumpster.
All three men have been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and police departments in Alvin and Houston conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennie Basile is prosecuting the case.
The case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program that has been historically successful in bringing together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone.