Gilroy man charged with federal firearm violation following January 2020 killing

SAN JOSE – A 35-year-old Gilroy man has been charged with a federal firearm violation in connection with the shooting death of another person during a drug deal more than two years ago in San Jose, authorities said.

A complaint filed April 11 alleges Marcus Pardo shot and killed 26-year-old Richard Huy Nguyen with a .50 caliber firearm on Jan. 15, 2020, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a news release. Nguyen was apparently involved in coordinating the deal between Pardo and another person, identified by prosecutors as the “intended buyer.”

San Jose police arrested Pardo on Feb. 13, 2020, following a standoff at an East San Jose home.

Nguyen’s recovered text messages and other evidence showed he and the buyer met with Pardo, who had agreed to sell prescription oxycodone pills to the buyer, according to the complaint. In addition, the messages allegedly indicate Pardo and the buyer were bringing guns to the deal and the buyer considered robbing Pardo during the deal.

The complaint also outlines text messages by Nguyen acknowledging the danger inherent in the situation, prosecutors said. In one, he wrote to his friends, “Y’all if I die tonight just know I love y’all.”

Pardo is charged with one count of using or carrying a firearm during and in relation to a drug-trafficking crime. If convicted, he faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison and a maximum sentence of life. Pardo could also be ordered to pay restitution and a $250,000 fine, as well as serve three years of supervised release.

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