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Man gets 50 years in drug deal gone bad

Last updated 1 year ago

SANTA ANA – An Orange gang member was sentenced Friday to 50 years to life in prison for a gang-motivated conspiracy and murder of a man during a botched drug rip off.

An Orange County jury convicted Robert Louis Reil, 33, in March of conspiracy to commit a robbery, murder and street terrorism and the enhancement of use of a gun for his role in luring a drug dealer to his execution on a residential street in Orange.

Reil was one of four gang members arrested in connection with the Jan. 3, 2010 slaying of Bernal Esquivel Felix, 49, who was shot once in the back as he drove his car slowly on Oak Street. The victim's car was still moving and came to a stop after hitting a parked car on the street, according to prosecutors.

Deputy District Attorney Larry Yellin argued at trial Felix was lured to the neighborhood by Amour Villamar, 32, Reil's girlfriend, with a ruse that she intended to buy drugs from him.

But instead, Reil and co-defendants Joseph Baez, 27, and Christian Galindo, 26, are said to have waited in the darkness. Baez sneaked up on Felix and shot him once in the back, according to police. The would-be robbers fled from the scene without getting Felix' drug stash, prosecutors said.

Galindo pleaded guilty earlier this year to lesser charges and was sentenced to 12 years in prison. Villamar's case is pending.

 

By VIK JOLLY and LARRY WELBORN / THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER

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