Silverio Garza Jr., 60, and Joel Javier Garza, 42, both of Rio Grande City, Texas, have been sentenced to prison for embezzlement, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced.
U.S. District Judge Randy Crane sentenced Garza Jr. and Garza to two years and four months, respectively, in federal prison without parole at a hearing yesterday afternoon in federal court in McAllen.
Garza Jr. and Garza (not related) pleaded guilty on June 7, 2011, to embezzlement – admitting they embezzled and converted property belonging to the United States government over a two-year-period between May 2007 and August 2009. Garza Jr. was the area operations manager for the Falcon Dam Power Plant, while Garza was the superintendent of the plant. The embezzlement was accomplished with the use of a government International Merchant Purchase Authorization Credit (IMPAC) card issued to Garza.
In deciding their sentence, Judge Crane considered the amount of embezzled property and the position held by each defendant at the Falcon Dam and power plant project. Following completion of their term of imprisonment, the court ordered each defendant to serve a three-year-term of supervised release. As part of their sentence, the court ordered Garza Jr. to pay $31,521.40 in restitution within 30 days, while Garza must pay $64,600.45 in restitution with $10,000 due within 30 days and the balance to paid during the term of supervised release in equal monthly installments.
The defendants have been out on bond since their Dec. 2 and Dec. 3, 2010, arrests. They were allowed to remain on bond pending their surrender to the United States Marshals Service on Aug. 15, 2011, pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility where they will serve their sentence.