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Career criminal from Bogota gets sweet deal

Photo Credit: Mary K. Miraglia
Photo Credit: Mary K. Miraglia

ONLY ON CLIFFVIEW PILOT: A pile of mounting charges led to what a Superior Court judge in Hackensack called “a very generous” one-year prison sentence for an ex-con headed back to prison for the third time.

Eduardo Masdeu was arrested last May after a woman whose parking space he swiped snapped a cellphone pic of his car, moments before he left a nearby apartment with two pillowcases full of stolen goods.

Given a criminal history that stretches more than 15 years – including two prison stings – Masdeu got “a very generous plea deal,” Superior Court Judge Patrick J. Roma said Friday.

Masdeu with Public Defender Seth Victor (STORY / PHOTOS: Mary K. Miraglia)

“You were looking at a lot of time in jail,” Roma said, “and your attorney went out of his way to get you this generous offer.”

Masdeu, who turned 37 weeks ago, thanked the judge for his time and understanding.

Besides burglaries, Masdeu’s recent rap sheet includes assault, shoplifting, and motor vehicle offenses – detailed in four separate indictments that could have brought prison sentence of five years each.

Instead, Masdeu pleaded guilty to one count of burglary and the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office dropped the remaining charges.

He also received a two separate two-year driver’s license suspension from the judge and must spend the entire year in prison without parole.

Masdeu was making off with $9,200 worth of jewelry and electronics following a burglary when he ran into a neighbor who was upset after finding a rental car in her parking spot.

After snapping a cellphone shot of the vehicle, she looked out her apartment window to Masdeu. She asked what he was doing, but he loaded the booty into the car and took off, Hackensack Detective Capt. Thomas Salcedo told CLIFFVIEW PILOT .

Soon after, the burglary was discovered. The woman showed the cellphone photo to city police, who called the rental agency with the license plate number.

Masdeu was traced to a Bogota address.

Sometime later, Bogota Detective Geoffrey Cole spotted the car and called his counterparts in Hackensack, who found some of the stolen goods still in the vehicle.

The case was handled by Senior Assistant Bergen County Prosecutor Kenneth Ralph ( pictured above, left; Masdeu is on the right ).

STORY / PHOTOS: Mary K. Miraglia

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