LAS VEGAS (AP) – A man convicted of being an enforcer for a Taiwan-based criminal gang will be sentenced Tuesday to life in a Nevada prison without parole for murder, but could get more than 100 additional years on other charges in a bloody stabbing and slashing that left one man dead and two people wounded in a Las Vegas karaoke bar in July 2009.
A state court jury in Las Vegas decided in December that 26-year-old Xiao Ye Bai won’t be put to death. The remainder of Bai’s sentence for crimes including kidnapping, conspiracy, attempted murder and extortionate collection of a debt will be up to Clark County District Court Judge Michael Villani.
Prosecutor Marc DiGiacomo said Monday that a state presentencing report recommended maximum sentences. Combined, they could top 100 years.
Bai still faces prosecution in California in a separate shooting several months before the Las Vegas attack that left one person dead and another wounded outside a karaoke bar in the city of San Gabriel.
Bai’s lawyer, Robert Draskovich, said Monday he’s satisfied the Nevada jury spared Bai’s life for stabbing and slashing Wen Jun “James” Li at least 32 times in the Forbes KTV bar and restaurant several blocks west of the Las Vegas Strip.
“Our whole case from beginning to end was about keeping him off death row,” Draskovich said.
DiGiacomo said Bai was acting to collect a $10,000 gambling debt on behalf of a gang called United Bamboo when his ex-girlfriend, Pei “Nikki” Pei, drove him to the karaoke bar in Las Vegas.
Pei pleaded guilty before trial to reduced felony charges of accessory to murder and testified at trial against Bai. She was sentenced Feb. 7 to two years’ probation.
Inside the bar, Bai slashed Jian Guo while approaching Li, and stabbed a woman, Lin Yao, when she tried to intervene to stop the attack on Li.
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