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Sentence Is 20 Years in Kidnaping-Murder

December 19, 1985

A 21-year-old San Fernando man was sentenced Wednesday to 20 years to life in state prison for his role in the kidnaping and murder of a young Pacoima man last November.

In imposing the sentence on Jesus Jose Robles, San Fernando Superior Court Judge John H. Major said he took into account the victim's vulnerability and the "high degree of cruelty, viciousness and callousness" of the crime.

Robles was convicted last month of second-degree murder, assault with a deadly weapon, kidnaping and conspiracy in the shooting death of 18-year-old Ruben Cruz. The victim was last seen alive in front of an all-night market in Pacoima waiting for his mother to pick him up from work.

Cruz, who police said was not a gang member, was abducted by a truckload of six youths yelling gang slogans, according to witnesses. His partly decomposed body was found a month later in a canyon next to the Golden State Freeway near Newhall.

According to court documents, Robles helped drag Cruz into a truck, beat him and tortured him with lighted cigarettes, but did not fire the fatal shots.

The driver of the truck, Robert Ontiveros, was convicted of voluntary manslaughter and conspiracy to commit assault with a deadly weapon and was sentenced to three years in state prison.

Three other defendants, Ronnie Luna, Michael Lucero and Benny Lucero, were convicted in Juvenile Court of murder and sentenced to California Youth Authority custody.

Investigators are still looking for the last suspect, Ray Para of San Fernando, who allegedly fired the shots that killed Cruz. Para, who is on the Los Angeles Police Department's 10 Most Wanted List, has been sought in Los Angeles, Chicago and Mexico, court officials said.

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