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Santa Rosa man who was accused in state court of robbing an armored car service of nearly $1 million last year and plotting a similar heist this year has now been indicted on related federal charges. Monico Dominguez, 39, was indicted by a federal grand jury in San Francisco on Nov. 29 on 11 felony counts, including robbery conspiracy, robbery, attempted robbery, use of a gun and money laundering.
The new federal charges relate to both Dominguez’s alleged armed robbery of $990,000 at a Garda Cash Logistics armored car warehouse in Santa Rosa on Aug. 11, 2011, and his alleged conspiracy with two other men to rob another Garda car of several million dollars on Aug. 6 of this year. This year’s alleged plot for a second robbery was foiled when an informant tipped off police.
The federal indictment also charges Dominguez’s two alleged associates, his nephew, Juan Dominguez, 27, and Shawn Geernaert, 37, both of Santa Rosa, with conspiracy and attempted robbery in connection with the alleged Aug. 6 scheme. The three men were arraigned before a federal magistrate in San Francisco this week and are due to appear before U.S. District Judge Edward Chen, the trial judge assigned to the case, on Dec. 19. The three defendants were originally arrested on Aug. 7 and charged in Sonoma County Superior Court with attempted armed robbery and conspiracy in the Aug. 6 incident, and, in Monico Dominguez’s case, with armed robbery in 2011 as well.
After a preliminary hearing, Sonoma County Superior Court Judge Kenneth Gnoss on Oct. 30 ordered them to stand trial on those charges. Sonoma County District Attorney Jill Ravitch was not immediately available for comment today on whether county prosecutors will drop the state charges against the men in view of the federal indictment. The federal charges carry potentially heavy sentences if the men are convicted.
The robbery, attempted robbery, conspiracy and money laundering counts each carry a possible maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. Monico and Juan Dominguez each also face charges of using a gun in a robbery or attempted robbery, and that count has a maximum possible sentence of life in prison. In the federal money laundering counts, Monico Dominguez is accused of buying a $21,000 Harley Davidson motorcycle, a $20,000 car and a $10,075 ironworking machine with the alleged proceeds of the 2011 robbery.
The indictment also charges him with one count of structuring, or dividing cash bank deposits into amounts of less than $10,000 to evade a federal law requiring banks to report larger cash deposits. The indictment alleges Dominguez made 42 deposits of $146,500 in cash and coins between Aug. 17, 2011, and June 29, 2012. Geernaert was additionally accused of possessing marijuana with the intent to distribute it on Oct. 21, 2012, and maintaining a drug premise within 1,000 feet of a playground at his Santa Rosa cabinet shop.
In the Superior Court proceedings, Sonoma County prosecutors alleged that in the 2011 robbery, Monico Dominguez and other unnamed suspects, wearing masks and body armor and carrying assault weapons, ducked under a door that was closing after an armored car entered the Garda warehouse in southwest Santa Rosa. The men allegedly took $990,000 but left several million dollars behind. Deputy District Attorney Robert Waner alleged the plan in this year’s plot was to drive away in an armored car and hide the money in Geernaert’s cabinet shop to make sure that stolen cash would not be left behind.
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