Vo Duong Tran, 42, of New Orleans, was convicted in March 2009 of plotting the robbery with an accomplice, Yu Sung Park. Park, 36, of Wilmette, Ill., was also sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Santa Ana, Calif., to 30 years in prison.
Tran worked for the FBI’s Chicago Division from 1992 to April 2003.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles, Tran organized and Park schemed “to commit a violent home-invasion robbery” of a home in the middle-class community of Fountain Valley, Calif. They thought the home was a base for a drug-trafficking organization and was flush with drugs and cash, prosecutors said. But the home was actually vacant.
Tran repeatedly expressed interest in traveling from New Orleans to Orange County to pull off the robbery, authorities said.
According to undercover FBI tapes played in court, Tran said he would provide the necessary equipment, namely firearms, silencers and bulletproof vests, authorities said.
In 2008, Tran and Park traveled to California and stayed in a hotel in Fountain Valley. They met with two men on July 14 to plan the robbery, authorities said. One of the men was an undercover FBI agent and the other was cooperating with the agency.
Tran and Park told the two undercover men to shoot anyone who did not cooperate during the robbery, investigators said.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office said the FBI arrested Tran and Park after the meeting and searched their hotel room, where agents found five firearms, including a machine gun, a silencer-equipped assault rifle and a .22-caliber handgun with an integrated silencer; ammunition; two bulletproof vests; camouflage clothing; and devices to handcuff anyone found inside the home.