For Immediate Release
Honduran National Sentenced to 41 Months in Federal Prison for Possession of Firearms by an Alien Illegally and Unlawfully in the United States
United States Attorney Ronald C. Gathe, Jr. announced that U.S. District Judge Brian A. Jackson sentenced Elmer Enrique Amaya Gonzales, age 20, of Honduras, to 41 months in federal prison following his conviction for possession of firearms by an alien illegally and unlawfully in the United States. Upon his release from prison, Gonzales will be removed from the United States and returned to his home country of Honduras.
According to admissions made as a part of his guilty plea, on June 6, 2022, East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office deputies were dispatched to Innovation Park Drive in reference to an armed robbery. Upon arrival, deputies contacted the two victims, who advised they were robbed at gunpoint. The victims stated that they were outside discussing the day's upcoming work schedule when they were approached by three armed Hispanic males who demanded their possessions. The three males fled the scene in a dark colored older model Toyota Corolla.
Deputies were able to collect camera footage from the nearby area and observed a dark colored Toyota Corolla traveling in the same area around the time of the robbery. Through this footage, deputies were able to determine the license plate of the vehicle. On June 6, 2022, the vehicle was observed parked outside of Bayou Fountain Avenue with a Hispanic male standing next to it. Deputies watched the vehicle and observed the individual, later identified as Gonzales, enter and exit the vehicle's driver side door multiple times. Deputies contacted Gonzales and detained him for further questioning.
While on scene, deputies observed multiple items in plain view within the vehicle possibly related to the armed robbery that occurred on June 4. Specifically, deputies observed masks, rifle magazines, and rifle ammunition. Investigators obtained a state search warrant to search the vehicle. During the search warrant, deputies recovered a Palmetto, model PSAK47 7.62nun caliber rifle, and a CBC, model 715P, .22 caliber pistol, and various types of ammunition from the vehicle. As the primary user of the Toyota Corolla, Gonzales was aware of the presence of the firearms and ammunition. A Honduran passport belonging to Gonzales was also found in the vehicle's center console.
This matter was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Department of Homeland Security, and the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Eli J. Abad.