After the DOJ dropped arson charges against a left-wing rioter, Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN) pressed the administration for answers, according to an email.
Victor Sanchez-Santa, a 19-year-old at the time, was arrested and charged in a federal court with arson charges back in June 2020, after he is said to have started a fire that destroyed an NYPD vehicle during the violent George Floyd riots.
According to the complaint issued against Sanchez-Santa:
“On June 9, 2020, at 1:20 a.m., SANCHEZ-SANTA pulled up beside an NYPD squad car on West 42nd Street and then held a cloth glove to the flame until it caught fire. He then placed the burning glove under the police car and returned to his car.”
U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman applauded police for their fast reply and help in identifying the defendant following his arrest.
Biden’s Department of Justice threw out the case in November 2021, when it was still pending. Arson has a mandatory minimum sentence of around five years in prison and a max of 20-years.
U.S. Attorney T. Josiah Pertz said:
“Based on a review of the available evidence in this case and data pertaining to this defendant obtained subsequent to the issuing of the Indictment, we have determined that further prosecution of SANCHEZ would not be in the best interests of justice.”
The Department of Justice also concluded that “deferring prosecution” was in the defendant’s and the United States’ best interests.
Prosecutors sentenced Sanchez-Santa to nine months of probation and required anger management classes rather than prison time, according to his lawyer.
Banks requested the Attorney General’s Office “submit to us all relevant evidence and information obtained after the filing of the Indictment” by June 24 in order for his office to determine whether charges should be dropped.
According to Banks, the DOJ’s decision “coincides with its pattern of sympathetic treatment of left-wing rioters.” Banks referred to two New York lawyers who were captured and arrested for hurling Molotov cocktails at the NYPD during the BLM riots and were later charged but had their charges removed and given a “much more lenient” plea bargain.