The brother of retired NBA player Tayshaun Prince was sentenced Friday to 21 years in state prison for twice robbing marijuana dealers at the posh Resort at Pelican Hill in Newport Beach.

Thomas Lamarr Prince, 40, of Anaheim, was convicted of four counts of robbery, and jurors also found true sentencing enhancement allegations for a prior robbery conviction in Los Angeles two years ago, according to Senior Deputy District Attorney Paul Chrisopoulos.

Prince and three other suspects still at large pulled off two robberies at the resort on Feb. 19 and March 21 of this year, the prosecutor said.

Prince and his cohorts arranged with a dealer to buy about 100 pounds of marijuana on Feb. 19, the prosecutor said. They met in a grocery store parking lot and one of the suspects told the four dealers they could finish the deal at a room in the fancy hotel.

When they got to the room, three suspects jumped out and robbed the dealers at gunpoint.

After the robbers left, three of the four dealers suspected it was a set-up and kidnapped the fourth man.

The man’s family called police and said he was missing, Chrisopoulos said. Steele Burnside and Nicholas Hernandez, who were victims in the robbery, are charged with kidnapping their drug-dealing partner and holding him hostage for the $130,000 they figured they lost in the stickup.

On March 21, Prince and three suspects arranged another meeting with marijuana dealers at the same grocery store parking lot and then robbed them in a Pelican Hill hotel room.

A cell phone used to set up the meetings was traced back to Prince.

–City News Service

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