Spa owner sentenced to 5 years for killing woman with fake botox injections
by Kristian Hernandez
Friday, March 4, 2016
McALLEN—A local spa owner accused of fatally injecting a women in 2012 with fake Botox was convicted and sentenced for murder this week. Elva Mendoza Navarro, 39, of Hidalgo was sentenced to five years in prison after she pleaded guilty Thursday to the murder of Zenyasent Cisneros. Cisneros died from complications of the injections she received on Oct. 5, 2013, at Bella’s Face and Body Spa, 400 block of North 10th Street, which was owned by Navarro.
According to court documents, the woman paid for a buttock enhancement procedure using Botox, but the imported product turned out to be mislabeled hardware store grade silicone, according to court documents.
Her attorney, Terry Canales, argued that Navarro was not aware the Botox was fake when she injected six women, including Cisneros, with it and claimed to have also injected herself with the product, according to court records. “There were a lot of mitigating issues,” Canales said Friday over the phone. “There was a possibility that she could have been fooled herself and had no idea the product was not was it was labeled.”
Canales also represented Navarro in a federal case where Navarro pleaded guilty in June 2014 to receiving and importing the liquid silicone she injected into Cisneros with the intent to “defraud and mislead” her customers, according to court records. Navarro was sentenced to three years in prison for that charge, which will run at the same time as the five years she was sentenced to Thursday.
In the murder case, Canales was asking the district court judge to reduce the charge to manslaughter and recommended she receive probation because there was no proof of intent by Navarro to kill Cisneros. Navarro was originally facing 99 years in prison.
In exchange for her guilty plea, prosecutors dropped two counts of practicing medicine without a license and one count of kidnapping from a separate case. Navarro was charged in 2012 alongside her husband Miguel Angel Navarro in a federal court involving the kidnapping of a UTPA student, court documents show. Her husband was tried and was sentenced to 34 years in prison. Navarro testified during his trial and told the jury she picked him up on Sept, 15, 2012, along with two other men at an apartment complex in Edinburg and they had Ana Elizondo with a towel on her head when they got into the truck, according to records.
She said her husband, who was found to be the mastermind of the kidnapping, took Elizondo because her father owed about $150,000 to some people, according to her testimony.
Navarro will be eligible for parole after serving half of her sentence and has already served about nine months in jail.
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