|March 27, 2019
Contact: Kylie Mason
Phone: (850) 245-0150
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—A Florida judge today ordered lengthy prison sentences for two men who dressed like ninjas and broke into homes across the state. The often-called ninja robbers, Henry Contreras and Johnathan Contreras, pleaded guilty to charges related to a string of robberies involving millions of dollars of stolen property. The Honorable Joseph Foster of Florida’s 20th Judicial Circuit sentenced each man to 45 years in prison.
According to charging documents filed by the Florida Attorney General’s Office of Statewide Prosecution, the men were part of a larger group that broke into homes at night wearing dark clothing and masks. Their method of operation included tying up home owners and leading them through the homes at gunpoint to locate cash, jewelry and other expensive items.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “The terror inflicted by this crime spree frightened home owners, as the surveillance video from these burglaries made news across the country. The brazen nature of these criminal acts—breaking into homes and holding people hostage—highlights the danger the defendants pose, and I am grateful our statewide prosecutors secured long prison sentences to help ensure these men will never again terrorize Floridians.”
In 2017, Assistant Statewide Prosecutors John Roman and Robert Finkbeiner secured a guilty verdict against the men for crimes relating to two home invasion robberies in Orange County. The Honorable Robert Egan of Florida’s Ninth Judicial Circuit sentenced Henry Contreras to 30 years in prison, and Johnathan Contreras to 25 years in prison for those crimes.
Jury selection in the Collier County trial lasted nearly four days before the defendants pleaded guilty and were sentenced to 45 years in prison. The defendants pleaded guilty as charged to racketeering, conspiracy to commit racketeering, six counts of home invasion robbery with a firearm, aggravated battery with a firearm, carjacking with a firearm and numerous counts of kidnapping and dealing in stolen property.
Assistant Statewide Prosecutors Michael-Anthony Pica and Jennifer Gutmore, with the assistance of Roman and Finkbeiner, prosecuted the two defendants in Collier County.
Trial is still pending in Collier County for a third defendant, Andres Perez, on similar charges. Perez is already serving a 30-year prison sentence for his role in the Orange County burglaries.