By: Richard L. Smith
Yasin Villafana, 38, of Elizabeth, has been convicted by a Union County jury of several weapons offenses, as announced by Union County Prosecutor William A. Daniel, Elizabeth Police Chief Giacomo Sacca, and Police Director Earl Graves.The jury found Villafana guilty of 2nd-degree Unlawful Possession of a Weapon, 4th-degree Possession of a Large Capacity Magazine, and 4th-degree Possession of a Prohibited Weapon or Device.
He was also convicted of a disorderly persons offense for Resisting Arrest.
The verdict came after approximately two hours of deliberation, concluding a three-day trial presided over by Union County Superior Court Judge Regina Caufield, J.S.C.
The case stems from an incident on May 5, 2022, when Villafana was apprehended in Elizabeth on an outstanding warrant. During the arrest, he was found in possession of an expandable metal baton and a black semi-automatic handgun equipped with a large-capacity magazine, as noted by Assistant Prosecutor Darrell Coco, who led the prosecution.
Villafana’s sentencing is set for April 12, 2024, before Judge Caufield.
He faces a substantial prison term of up to 20 years in State Prison, with a mandatory requirement to serve up to 10 years before eligibility for parole.