Defendants plead guilty to robbery of USPS truck in 2009

Two Bakersfield men have been sentenced to federal prison terms for their part in the 2009 hijacking and robbery of a United States Postal Service Truck and the kidnapping of the driver in Taft.

Raul Ojeda, 42, received an 8-year, one month prison term and Daniel Diaz, 26, was sentenced to 7 years.
Ojeda and Diaz were also ordered to repay the $13,860 taken in the robbery.

Both men pleaded guilty to crime, in which Diaz jumped in the cab of the truck when it was stopped at a stop sign and forced the driver to drive at gunpoint to the empty West Side Hospital campus.

There the driver was threatened and ordered to tie himself up.

The robbery and kidnapping took place on Oct. 16, a Friday night.

The mail truck had stopped at Highway 119 when the hijacking took place.

Once the driver was tied up, the defendants took his keys and opened the rear of the truck up and removed 7 postal bags containing, mail and bank deposits, including cash, according to the United States Attorney.

Ojeda was a former driver for the company the USPS contracted to pick up the mail in the area, according to court documents filed in connection with the case. He is Diaz' uncle.

He was the mastermind behind the robbery, according the law enforcement officials

The suspects were arrested about six months after the robbery in Bakersfield.
The defendants were also ordered to repay the $13,860 that they stole from the truck during the robbery.

Ojeda and Diaz each pleaded guilty to aggravated robbery of mail, money or other property of the United States on Nov. 13.