Tuesday, August 28, 2012

New York Man Sentenced to Life Imprisonment for Armed Robbery of Hanover Township Bank

The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced today that Senior United States District Court Judge James M. Munley has sentenced Kareem Shabazz, age 54, formerly of New York City, to life imprisonment for the armed robbery of a Hanover Township Bank. On May 4, 2012, after deliberating less than one hour, a federal jury returned the guilty verdict on all counts in the trial.

United States Attorney Peter J. Smith noted that the jury convicted Shabazz of the armed bank robbery of the M & T Bank at 722 San Souci Parkway in Hanover Township, Pennsylvania. The jury also found that Shabazz brandished a short-barreled shotgun during the robbery and was guilty of conspiracy to do so. Finally, the jury found Shabazz guilty of transporting firearms with the intent to use them in the commission of a home invasion robbery in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania.

According to Assistant United States Attorney John Gurganus, who prosecuted the case, the evidence presented at trial established that on October 30, 2010, Shabazz and two other people entered the M & T Bank brandishing weapons, including pistols and sawed-off shotgun. Shabazz was wearing a mask and wielding the short-barreled shotgun. Shabazz and another robber vaulted over the teller counter, and one of the armed bank robbers closed the blinds so no person could see in from the outside. The robbers ordered the bank employees and a bank customer to get on the ground. Shabazz and the other robbers then left the bank with more than $17,000, got into a vehicle being driven by a co-conspirator, and traveled to New York.

The trial evidence established that after Shabazz was identified as one of the robbers, he was arrested on December 30, 2010, transporting three firearms (including the short-barreled shotgun he had brandished in the bank robbery) across state lines with the intent to use those weapons in the commission of a home invasion robbery in Luzerne County.

In noting the jury’s guilty verdict on all counts and the judge’s sentence of life imprisonment, Mr. Smith praised the efforts of the FBI, the Pennsylvania State Police, and the Hanover Township Police Department for their diligent efforts in pursuing this case.

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