robberies

Miami Woman Sentenced for Robberies, but Stolen Parrot Remains Missing

A Miami woman has been sentenced to three years in state prison for her role in helping coordinate two break-ins that resulted in the birdnapping of a family's beloved gray African parrot, Cuca.

The robberies, which took place at a West Kendall home and office building in the summer of 2017, also included over $400,000 in stolen jewelry, firearms and other valuables, as well as passports and Social Security cards.

Prosecutors said Yanela Tena-Cabrera, 24, acted as the lookout for the heist, which she claims was organized by her aunt, the family's long-term housekeeper.

She received her sentence in court on Thursday. In addition to three years in prison, Tena-Cabrera faces two years of house arrest and eight years probation.

Robert Lopez, the victim of the robberies, told NBC 6 he was not satisfied with Tena-Cabrera's sentence. His family's beloved parrot has not been recovered; he suspects the bird has been killed, since she knew hundreds of words and could have posed a risk to the thieves, who have yet to be identified.

According to the Miami Herald, Tena-Cabrera's history of mental illness led Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Veornica Diaz to decide on a lesser severe sentence than she would have given otherwise.

The paper also reported that Tena-Cabrera must pay a restitution of at least $50,000.

"I guess crime pays, your honor," Lopez responded to Diaz when she explained her reasoning behind the charges.

On July 4th, 2017, surveillance cameras captured 4 masked men walking down the side of his Southwest Miami-Dade home. Lopez told NBC 6 they pried open his garage door and headed straight for the safe.

"Nobody should go through this. It's not about money, you feel violated," he said.

Many of the items that were taken were irreplaceable and had sentimental value, including some of his late father's belongings. Cuca the parrot had been with Lopez's family for 12 years. She knew everybody's name.

Less than a month after the first robbery, Lopez's office was burglarized on Monday, July 31st. Cameras captured the men looking behind paintings and rummaging through the building, but they didn't manage to steal anything and quickly took off in a dark-colored four door sedan.

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