Attorney: Client forced into La Plaza Mall robbery

August 9, 2018

EDINBURG — The first of seven men arrested nearly two weeks ago during an attempted jewelry store robbery appeared Wednesday in court for a probable cause hearing, where his court-appointed attorney claimed the defendant was “forced into” the situation at the threat of violence against him and his family.

Miguel Quintanilla was arrested July 28 on charges of aggravated robbery and failure to identity after he and six other men, who have been described by authorities as Mexican nationals, attempted to steal millions in fine jewelry and Rolex watches from Deutsch & Deutsch, a luxury jeweler inside La Plaza Mall.

The hearing — sought by Quintanilla’s court-appointed attorney, Sergio J. Sanchez — provided insight into how these men allegedly found themselves planning a million-dollar heist during a peak shopping time at the popular McAllen mall, which draws large weekend crowds from each side of the border.

Sanchez, in a statement provided to The Monitor following the hearing, said his 26-year-old client “is innocent of all charges.”

“In time, a jury will see how he was forced into this terrible situation through coercion and death threats on himself as well as his family in Mexico, to include his wife, parents and children,” the statement continued.

A more complete version of this story is available on www.myBrownsvilleHerald.com

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