Serial robber gets 20-year prison term

A Newark man who robbed a Harrison pharmacy — and 10 other establishments in Hudson and Essex counties over an eight-month span — was sentenced last week to 20 years in prison,

Christopher Mojica, 24, had pleaded guilty in July to conspiracy, robbery and discharging a firearm in connection with the crime spree that began Sept. 14, 2012, and ended April 19, 2013. He was arrested April 27, 2013, following the final heist — at a Delta Gas Station on Bloomfield Ave. in Newark. In that incident, Mojica fired a .45-caliber semiautomatic handgun as he fled the scene.

The Harrison robbery was reported Feb. 21, 2013, at Pharmacy Plus, 234 Harrison Ave.

Authorities said Mojica and his conspirators primarily targeted pharmacies, including five in Newark and one in Jersey City, taking cash and oxycodone tablets. They also robbed a jewelry store, a barber shop and “a gambling operation,” all in Newark.

All the establishments were reportedly robbed at gunpoint.

U.S. District Judge Joel A. Pisano imposed the prison term Friday in Federal Court in Trenton. In addition, he sentenced Mojica to five years of supervised release. Restitution will be determined at a later date.

U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman cited the FBI, the Harrison, Newark and Jersey City police departments, and the Essex and Hudson County prosecutors’ offices for their work on the case.

– Karen Zautyk 

 

The Observer Staff