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St. Croix’s Wahilli Nasco James Gets 7.25 Years In Prison For Rock City Jewelry Store Heist

CHARLOTTE AMALIE – A St. Croix man was given 7.25 years in prison today by a federal judge for his role in a jewelry store heist on St. Thomas in January.

Wahilli Nasco James, 23, got that sentence for his role in the armed robbery of the Gems and Gold Corner jewelry store, located on the St. Thomas waterfront, United States Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert said.

“The flagrant actions of gun-toting robbers will not be tolerated in the territory,” Shappert said. “In the United States Attorney’s Office, our primary focus is public safety. We intend to target violent criminals for federal prosecution. Today’s sentence is the result of constructive relationships between law-abiding citizens, hard-working law enforcement officers, and dedicated federal prosecutors.”

U.S. District Court Judge Curtis Gomez sentenced James to 87 months in prison for possession of a firearm during a crime of violence, and five years of supervised release. Judge Gomez ordered James to pay a $100 special assessment, and perform 400 hours of community service.

Judge Gomez also ordered James to pay restitution in the amount of $31,027.81 to Gems and Gold Corner and $130,322.12 to Dorchester Insurance.

On January 19, 2018, James pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm during the September 16, 2013, Hobbs Act robbery of Gems and Gold Corner Jewelry Store on St. Thomas.

As a part of his plea agreement, James admitted that he and others committed a Hobbs Act robbery of the jewelry store and brandished weapons to threaten and intimidate store employees.

The case was the result of an investigation conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD).

It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kim Chisholm.

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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 40 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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