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June 29, 2011

MANAGER OF TUJUNGA BUSINESS SENTENCED TO OVER FOUR YEARS IN FEDERAL PRISON IN MEDICARE FRAUD SCHEME

LOS ANGELES – The manager of a Tujunga medical supply company that fraudulently sought more than $1 million from the Medicare program for unneeded electric wheelchairs, hospital beds, and other durable medical equipment has been sentenced to 51 months in federal prison.

Petros Odachyan, 45, of North Hollywood, was sentenced yesterday by United States District Judge Otis D. Wright II.

Odachyan, the manager of RL Medical Supply, pleaded guilty in June 2010 to conspiracy to commit health care fraud. Odachyan bilked the Medicare program by submitting claims for durable medical equipment that was unnecessary and, in many instances, never provided to patients. As part of the scheme, Odachyan submitted claims to Medicare that were supported by forged prescriptions. While the forged prescriptions identified actual Medicare beneficiaries, these beneficiaries had not obtained the prescriptions, and did not need or did not receive the durable medical equipment. RL Medical Supply submitted more than $1 million worth of fraudulent claims to Medicare, which paid out approximately $600,000.

Odachyan was arrested in May 2008 after an investigation by the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, a multi-agency team comprised of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG); the Fraud Section in the Criminal Division at the United States Department of Justice in Washington; and the United States Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles.

Wilmington Resident Sentenced to 27 Years in Federal Prison for Being an Armed Career Criminal

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , — fayarfa @ 6:40 pm

LOS ANGELES — A Wilmington resident who was arrested by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) for trafficking narcotics while armed was sentenced today to 324 months in federal prison.

Jason Nagel Dulay, 32, was sentenced by United States District Judge S. James Otero.

Dulay pleaded guilty in February to possession with the intent to distribute methamphetamine, carrying a firearm during a drug trafficking crime, and two counts of being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition. Dulay was arrested in 2010 after a man was fatally shot during an attempted robbery in Dulay’s room at a Harbor Gateway hotel where he had been stashing firearms, ammunition, and methamphetamine.

Unfortunately someone died as of a result of the criminal activity that Dulay participated in, and his 27–year sentence demonstrates that we will not tolerate placing the community at risk, says John A. Torres, special agent in charge, ATF, Los Angeles Field Division. The residents of South Bay can breathe easier knowing Dulay will spend a considerable amount of time behind bars for his criminal conduct.

FORMER EMPLOYEE OF U.S. FOREST SERVICE SENTENCED TO FOUR YEARS IN FEDERAL PRISON FOR EMBEZZLING 1 MILLION

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , — fayarfa @ 6:37 pm

LOS ANGELES – A former employee of the United States Forest Service who embezzled more than $1.4 million from the agency has been sentenced to serve four years in federal prison.

Kathy Stamps, 39, of Rancho Cucamonga, was sentenced yesterday by United States District Judge Christina A. Snyder. In addition to the 48-month prison term, Judge Snyder ordered Stamps to pay restitution in the amount of $1,090,744, which represents the portion of the embezzled money that Stamps had spent.

Stamps was an accountant with the Forest Service at the Angeles National Forest offices in Arcadia. Through her job, Stamps had access to funds contributed by private entities for road construction and other projects on federal lands. From early 2002 through October 2004, Stamps fraudulently manipulated and fabricated internal Forest Service records that caused the United States Treasury to issue six refund checks totaling $1,421,390 to entities that Stamps controlled. Stamps spent nearly $1.1 million on personal items that included cars, jewelry, mortgage payments and plastic surgery. When the embezzlement was discovered, the government was able to seize $330,645 from Stamps’ bank accounts.

During the nearly three years that she was embezzling money from the United States, Stamps “exhibited a complete disregard for the law,” prosecutors wrote in a sentencing memorandum. Stamps “carefully planned and executed her scheme, as evidenced by her manipulations of various internal records of the Angeles National Forest accounting office. [Stamps] abused the trust placed upon her by the public for the administration of government funds and used her specialized skills as an accountant to commit her offense.”

Last September, following a bench trial, Judge Snyder convicted Stamps of three counts of mail fraud in relation to the embezzlement scheme.

June 28, 2011

MAN TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR SHOOTING-MURDER OF ESTRANGED WIFE AFTER WAITING AND FOLLOWING HER FROM WORK

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , — fayarfa @ 5:57 pm

SANTA ANA - A man will be arraigned today for murdering his estranged wife by shooting her nine times in the chest after waiting and following her from work. John Rand Agosta, 35, Anaheim, is charged with one felony count of special circumstances murder by lying in wait with a sentencing enhancement for the personal discharge of a firearm causing death. If convicted, he faces a minimum sentence of life in state prison without the possibility of parole. Agosta is being held without bail and is expected to be arraigned this afternoon, Monday, June 20, 2011, in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana.

At approximately 2:00 p.m. on June 16, 2011, Agosta is accused of waiting outside of his estranged wife’s work in his Ford Mustang, armed with a firearm. The 28-year-old victim, Alejandra Hernandez, worked at a day care in the Turtle Rock area in Irvine.

When Hernandez left work lunch and began to drive away, Agosta is accused of following her in his car. Approximately half a mile from her work, Hernandez stopped her car in a cul-de-sac and got out. Agosta is accused of murdering the victim by shooting her nine times in the chest. He is accused of getting back into his vehicle, but was unable to start the engine. Agosta is accused of then getting out of his car, going back to the victim’s body, and kicking her one time before fleeing the scene on foot. The Ford Mustang, which is registered to the defendant, was left at the scene.

The Irvine Police Department (IPD), who investigated this case, responded to the scene after receiving calls regarding shots being fired and found the victim. Hernandez was pronounced dead at the scene.

THREE MEMBERS OF VENTURA AND SANTA BARBARA COUNTY GANGS GET AT LEAST 10 YEARS IN FEDERAL DRUG CASE

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , — fayarfa @ 5:55 pm

LOS ANGELES – Three men linked to three street gangs in Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties have received sentences ranging from a decade to more than 15 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to federal charges related to the distribution of methamphetamine.

Two of the three defendants were sentenced this morning by United States District Judge Otis D. Wright II after pleading guilty earlier this year. Those sentenced earlier today were:

David Michael Jimenez, 24, of Carpenteria, who was sentenced to 188 months in prison for his conviction on a methamphetamine trafficking conspiracy charge; and

Juan Duran Rivas, also known as “Flaco,” 37, of Ventura, who was sentenced to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to charges of conspiracy and distribution of methamphetamine.

The third defendant in the case – Jose Anthony Rivas, 35, of Ventura – was sentenced by Judge Wright on June 6 to 10 years in prison. Jose Rivas, who is Juan Rivas’ brother, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and distribution of methamphetamine.

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MAN TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR FORCIBLY RAPING AND SEXUALLY ASSAULTING WOMAN

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , — fayarfa @ 5:33 pm

MAN TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR FORCIBLY RAPING AND SEXUALLY ASSAULTING WOMAN HE LURED TO HIS HOME BY RESPONDING TO CRAIGSLIST HOUSECLEANING POST

SANTA ANA - A man will be arraigned today for forcibly raping and sexually assaulting a woman after luring her to his apartment by responding to her housecleaning post on Craigslist.com. Michael Delgado, 27, Fullerton, is charged with two felony counts of forcible rape, two felony counts of forcible oral copulation, one felony count of sexual penetration by foreign object, and one felony count of false imprisonment by violence. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 40 years in state prison. Delgado is being held on $250,000 bail and is scheduled to be arraigned today, Tuesday, June 21, 2011, in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana.

In June 2011, Delgado is accused of responding to a Craigslist ad posted by 42-year-old Jane Doe, in which she offered housecleaning services.

On June 17, 2011, Jane Doe went to the defendant’s Fullerton apartment to clean his home. Once the victim was inside, Delgado is accused of using force and refusing to let Jane Doe leave and forcing her to the ground. The defendant weighs approximately 300 pounds and Jane Doe is 5′3″ and 120 pounds.

Delgado is accused of forcibly digitally penetrating the victim, forcibly raping her twice, and forcing her to orally copulate him twice. He is accused of intimidating the victim by instructing her not to yell. Jane Doe escaped and ran to a passerby in the apartment complex for help.

June 27, 2011

MAN SENTENCED TO EIGHT YEARS IN PRISON FOR FORCIBLE RAPE AND SODOMY AFTER KIDNAPPING 23-YEAR-OLD WOMAN

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , , , — fayarfa @ 6:50 pm

WESTMINSTER - A man was sentenced today to eight years in state prison for raping and sodomizing a woman after forcing her into his vehicle. Phat Huy To, 27, Garden Grove, pleaded guilty to the court to one felony count each of forcible rape, sodomy by force, forcible oral copulation, and kidnapping.

At approximately 2:00 a.m. on July 16, 2010, To observed 23-year-old Jane Doe walking on Westminster Boulevard in Garden Grove while driving in his 2-door sedan. The victim and To did not know each other. The defendant pulled up next to the victim, rolled down the window, and ordered her to “get in the f***ing car” while holding what appeared to be a firearm under his shirt.

To drove the victim to his Garden Grove home and forced the victim to orally copulate him and forcibly raped and sodomized her in the garage of the home for over two hours. After terrorizing and sexually assaulting Jane Doe, To took her cell phone and bra and then dropped her off on a random Garden Grove street and fled the scene.

Jane Doe flagged down a passing Garden Grove Police officer and reported the crime. DNA was collected from the victim during the rape examination and was matched to To, whose DNA was in the State database stemming from an unrelated prior conviction.

A Quartz Hill mother convicted last month of the first-degree murder of her 18-month-old daughter was sentenced today

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , , — fayarfa @ 6:48 pm

LANCASTER – A Quartz Hill mother convicted last month of the first-degree murder of her 18-month-old daughter was sentenced today, the District Attorney’s Office announced.

Antelope Valley Superior Court Judge Hayden Zacky sentenced Stacey Marie Barker, 26, to a term of 25 years to life in state prison.

Barker was convicted on May 25 of one count each of first-degree murder, assault on a child under eight causing death and child abuse. Jurors, who deliberated for one day, also found true an allegation of great bodily injury.

Deputy District Attorney S. Kelly Cromer of the Antelope Valley Branch Office prosecuted the case.

On March 18, 2009, Barker told authorities that she had been knocked unconscious and possibly raped at a Lancaster city park by a so-called assailant who proceeded to abduct her daughter, Emma.

In response, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies launched a 12-hour manhunt for the child. The defendant later confessed that the child was dead and led detectives to her body in a Sylmar lot overrun with weeds, the prosecutor said.

Though Barker alleged that the child’s death was accidental, evidence presented at trial revealed injuries consistent with suffocation caused by a hand being placed over the girl’s nose and mouth.

Forensic reports further showed that the child had been dead for several hours before the defendant disposed of her body.

Barker ultimately admitted to authorities that she fabricated the first story and that her injuries – including contusions to her head and ribs, scrapes to her hand and injuries to her genital area – were self-inflicted.

The Gray Hooded Bandit was arrested today on a felony warrant charging him with more than two dozen robberies that spanned a four-month period

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , — fayarfa @ 6:45 pm

LOS ANGELES – A suspected serial armed robber dubbed the “gray hooded bandit” was arrested today on a felony warrant charging him with more than two dozen robberies that spanned a four-month period.

Jose Manual Cuellar, 20 (dob 10-16-90), is scheduled to be arraigned on Monday at the Foltz Criminal Justice Center, Department 30. He is being held without bail.

Prosecutors filed a felony complaint for arrest warrant – BA 384772 — on May 26 charging Cuellar, a parolee living in the Hollywood area, with 27 second-degree robberies. He is suspected of robbing “mom and pop” liquor and convenience stores between around Nov. 15, 2010 and ending Feb. 2. The stores were located in Hollywood-Olympic and Wilshire areas of Los Angeles, and some areas of the San Fernando Valley, including Glendale and Burbank.

Cuellar, convicted in 2008 of carjacking, faces more than 40 years in state prison if convicted.

He was arrested by LAPD detectives following an extensive investigation.

June 25, 2011

GANG MEMBER SENTENCED TO LIFE WITHOUT PAROLE PLUS MULTIPLE LIFE TERMS FOR SHOOTING-MURDER OF 18-YEAR-OLD MISTAKEN AS RIVAL

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — Tags: , , , — fayarfa @ 12:38 pm

WESTMINSTER -

A gang member was sentenced today to life in state prison without the possibility of parole plus multiple additional life terms for the shooting-murder of an 18-year-old mistakenly believed to be a rival. Mauro Ramirez, 24, Santa Ana, was found guilty by jury April 7, 2011, of one felony count of special circumstance murder in the commission of a drive by shooting and for the benefit of a criminal street gang, one felony of count attempted murder, and one felony count of street terrorism with sentencing enhancements for criminal street gang activity and the vicarious discharge of a firearm by a gang member.

Co-defendant Paul Raymond Coffee, 26, Santa Ana, was sentenced to 21 years in state prison after pleading guilty Feb. 8, 2011, to one felony count voluntary manslaughter with a sentencing enhancement for criminal street gang activity.

Flavio Roberto Arellano, 22, Santa Ana, (Case #11CF0637) is charged with one felony count of special circumstances murder for the benefit of a criminal street gang and one felony count of street terrorism with a sentencing enhancement for criminal street gang activity. If convicted, he faces a sentence of life in state prison without the possibility of parole. Arellano is being held without bail and is scheduled for a preliminary hearing July 15, 2011, at 8:30 a.m. in Department C-55, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

The following facts were presented during Ramirez’s jury trial:

The defendants are members of a Santa Ana criminal street gang. At approximately 7:00 p.m. on June 10, 2006, defendants Ramirez, Coffee, and Arellano were driving in a mini-van in rival gang territory with three other gang members. The vehicle slowed down as the defendants passed an apartment complex, where 18-year-old Esteban Cuellar was standing outside with a friend. The defendant drove away, circled the block, and drove back to the apartment complex. They opened the door to the van and began shooting at the two victims, whom the defendants believed to be rivals. The defendants then fled the scene.

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