12 February 2005 – LAWFUEL – The Law News Network – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California announced that Vu Nguyen of Santa Ana, California, was convicted on February 10, 2005, by a federal jury in Las Vegas, Nevada. The jury, after deliberating for approximately one hour, found Nguyen guilty of conspiracy, interference with commerce by violence, possession and use of a firearm in a crime of violence resulting in death, and aiding and abetting.
The convictions relate to the September 16, 1999, armed robbery at Chong Hing Jewelers, located in the Chinatown Mall on Spring Mountain Road in Las Vegas, and the murder of Kenneth Bailey, a store security guard. Judge Kent Dawson of the United States District Court for the District of Nevada presided over the four-week long trial.
According to the original indictment, on September 15, 1999, Vu Nguyen and co-conspirator Anh The Duong, also of Santa Ana, traveled from California to Nevada. The following day, Nguyen and Duong traveled to the jewelry store on Spring Mountain Road and stole approximately $1,720,000 worth of watches. The defendants used a semiautomatic assault weapon during the robbery and killed security guard Bailey as they were entering the store.
In September 2001, co-conspirator Duong was charged for this offense and multiple other armed robberies and homicides in a racketeering indictment filed in federal court in San Jose, California. That trial is expected to commence in late 2005.
Nguyen is facing a maximum statutory penalty of life imprisonment for the use of the firearm during the crime of violence; 20 years imprisonment on the interference with commerce by violence charge; and five years imprisonment on the conspiracy charge. Additionally, a fine of $250,000 and restitution to the victims up to twice the amount of the gross loss may be imposed by the court. The actual sentence will be imposed by the court.
In announcing the conviction of Nguyen, United States Attorney Kevin V. Ryan praised the work of Special Agents Blake Wirth, Ryan Dwyer, Marianne Etzel, and Tuan Nguyen of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the assistance provided by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. He also commended the work of Assistant United States Attorneys Jane Shoemaker and James T. Chou from the Northern District of California.
A copy of this press release and related court filings may be found on the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s website at www.usdoj.gov/usao/can . Related court documents and information may be found on the District Court website at www.cand.uscourts.gov or on .
All press inquiries to the U.S. Attorney’s Office should be directed to Luke Macaulay at (415) 436-6757 or by email at Luke.Macaulay3@usdoj.gov .