Mall run with a gun leads Groves man to federal prison

Published 3:32 pm Thursday, May 23, 2024

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One trip too many to the mall cost a local man more than five years in jail.

Eastern District of Texas U.S. Attorney Damien M. Diggs announced the sentencing of the Groves man Thursday afternoon, saying the defendant is facing federal prison for possessing a firearm.

Moses Benjamin Castillo, 38, pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm and was sentenced Thursday to 63 months in federal prison by U.S. District Judge Michael J. Truncale.

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According to information presented in court, on Sep. 28, 2022, Port Arthur Police received information that Castillo was in possession of methamphetamine and a gun in the Central Mall parking lot in Port Arthur.

Police encountered Castillo as he was leaving the parking lot and initiated a traffic stop after observing him commit a traffic violation.

Castillo consented to a search of the vehicle, where officers located a firearm, methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia.

Further investigation revealed Castillo to be a convicted felon and prohibited by federal law from owning or possessing firearms or ammunition.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and Port Arthur Police Department investigated this case, which Assistant U.S. Attorney Rachel Grove prosecuted.