Queens man who bound ex-girlfriend, left her to die in suitcase gets 30 years in prison: DOJ

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NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — A Queens man was sentenced to 30 years in prison Thursday for tying up his ex-girlfriend in her New Rochelle apartment, stuffing her inside of a suitcase where she suffocated and was found dead in Connecticut one week later.

Javier Da Silva pleaded guilty in 2019 to kidnapping for the death of Valerie Reyes, 24.

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Court documents said Da Silva attacked Reyes "in a violent altercation" in January 2019, kidnapping her while she suffered head trauma, bruising and a large hematoma to her forehead.

He covered her mouth with several layers of packing tape, bound her feet and hands with packing tape and twine before placing her inside of a suitcase. He then left her inside the suitcase and deposed her in Connecticut.

Federal officials said Da Silva then used her credit card, withdrawing over $5,000 in cash from her bank account and sold her IPad after she died.

"In the days after [the incident], he used her ATM card to empty her bank account and then attempted to cover up the evidence of his conduct," said Audrey Strauss, United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, in a statement.

Reyes' body was discovered a inside of suitcase alongside a public road in Greenwich, Connecticut. The Connecticut Medical Examiner’s Office later determined she died from homicidal asphyxiation.

"Valerie Reyes, the victim of this crime, was in the prime of her life when it was senselessly ended by Da Silva’s abhorrent act," Strauss said. "Those who commit violence, especially those who kill, will not escape justice."

Along with his sentence, Da Silva was sentenced to two years of supervised release.