Best Defender Bytes:

October 31, 2013

More Corruption Charges Filed Against Noguez, Salari

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:59 am

Los Angeles County Assessor John Noguez and a tax consultant who were charged last year in a massive corruption scheme to lower property taxes on favored individuals and businesses both pleaded not guilty today to a dozen new felony counts, the District Attorney’s Office announced.

Noguez, 48, and tax consultant Ramin Salari, 50, appeared in court before Judge George Lomeli to set a date for their preliminary hearing when they were arraigned on three new counts each of grand theft and three counts each of embezzlement. The new charges involve three additional properties in downtown Los Angeles that were appraised at a lower value.

Prosecutors allege that Noguez accepted bribes from Salari to lower property tax assessments for some of Salari’s clients, whose properties were located in Beverly Hills, Brentwood, Pasadena, Marina Del Rey and the South Bay. Prosecutors allege the new charges show Noguez was working with Salari as far back as March 1996.

In addition, prosecutors with the Public Integrity Division filed a separate case today charging Salari with three counts of felony tax evasion. Salari pleaded not guilty to those charges.

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Man Charged with Rape in El Monte Convenience Store Attack

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:56 am

An 18-year-old man accused of raping a clerk at an El Monte convenience store is scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon on multiple felony charges, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Joseph Leo Amaya (dob 1/1/95) is charged in case KA103513 with two counts of forcible rape and three counts of sexual penetration by a foreign object. Amaya is due to appear in Department R of Los Angeles County Superior Court, Pomona Branch.

The complaint includes a special allegation that the defendant kidnapped the victim to commit the offenses charged. The case was filed for warrant Oct. 23.

The 19-year-old victim was working the night shift at a mini mart when Amaya allegedly approached the girl. The defendant left the premise but allegedly returned while the victim was getting ready to close the store.

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Singer CeeLo Green Charged

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:54 am

Singer-songwriter CeeLo Green was charged today with furnishing ecstasy to a female victim, the District Attorney’s Office announced.

Green, whose real name is Thomas DeCarlo Callaway, was charged with one felony count of furnishing a controlled substance in case BA417464. He is expected to be arraigned at the Foltz Criminal Justice Center, Department 30, sometime after 1:30 p.m. Prosecutors asked that his bail be set at $30,000.

Green, 38 (dob 5-30-75), allegedly slipped ecstasy to a 33-year-old female while the two were dining at a downtown Los Angeles restaurant sometime between July 13 and July 14, 2012. The two later went back to the woman’s hotel. Prosecutors declined to file a charge of rape of an intoxicated person, citing insufficient evidence.

If convicted, Green faces up to four years in state prison.

Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office / case BA417464 / Oct. 21, 2013

October 30, 2013

Owners and Supervisor of Ambulance Transportation Company Plead Guilty in Los Angeles for Role in Ambulance Fraud Scheme

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 6:12 am

The owners and supervisor of Alpha Ambulance Inc. (Alpha), a now-defunct Los Angeles-area ambulance transportation company, have pleaded guilty in connection with an ambulance fraud scheme.

Acting Assistant Attorney General Mythili Raman of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; U.S. Attorney André Birotte Jr. of the Central District of California; Special Agent in Charge Glenn R. Ferry of the Los Angeles Region of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG); and Assistant Director in Charge Bill L. Lewis of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office made the announcement.

Alex Kapri, aka Alex Kapriyelov or Alexander Kapriyelov, 56; Aleksey Muratov, aka Russ Muratov, 32; and Danielle Hartsell Medina, 36, pleaded guilty on Oct. 28, 2013, before U.S. District Court Judge Audrey B. Collins in the Central District of California to conspiracy to commit health care fraud.  They face a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison when they are sentenced on Feb. 24, 2014.

Kapri and Muratov were owners and operators of Alpha, an ambulance transportation company that operated in the greater Los Angeles area and that specialized in the provision of non-emergency ambulance transportation services to Medicare-eligible beneficiaries, primarily dialysis patients.  Medina was employed by Alpha and ultimately supervised the training and education of its employees.

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October 29, 2013

OCTA BUS DRIVER TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR POSSESSING CHILD PORNOGRAPHY AND STORING IT ON HOME COMPUTER AND WORK LOCKER

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 6:00 am

WESMINSTER - An Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) bus driver is scheduled to be arraigned tomorrow for possessing hundreds of graphic images and videos of child pornography. Richard Raoul Contreras, 63, Garden Grove, is charged with one felony count of possession and control of child pornography. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of three years in state prison and mandatory lifetime sex offender registration. The defendant is out of custody on $20,000 bail. Contreras is scheduled to be arraigned tomorrow, Wednesday, Oct.

30, 2013, at 8:30 a.m. in Department W-1, West Justice Center, Westminster.

On May 30, 2012, members of the Orange County Child Exploitation Task Force (OCCETF) searched the defendant’s home after receiving information of possible possession of child pornography. Contreras is accused of possessing hundreds of videos and images containing graphic child pornography on his home computer stored on hard drives, flash drives, CDs, and DVDs. The defendant is accused of also storing CDs and DVDs containing images of child pornography in his work locker.

An extensive investigation was conducted by OCCETF. OCCETF is comprised of members from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations; Orange County Sheriff’s Department.                                                            (more…)

MAN CHARGED WITH STABBING-MURDER OF MOTHER IN ANAHEIM

Filed under: Uncategorized — fayarfa @ 5:57 am

SANTA ANA – A man will be arraigned today for the stabbing-murder of his mother in her Anaheim home. Gabriel Ramirez, 21, Anaheim, is charged with one felony count of murder with a sentencing enhancement for the personal use of a deadly weapon and faces a maximum sentence of 26 years to life in state prison if convicted. Ramirez is being held on $1 million bail and is expected to be arraigned today, Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2013, in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana.

At approximately 7:00 p.m. on Oct. 27, 2013, Ramirez is accused of murdering his 42-year-old mother Margarita Esquivias by stabbing her repeatedly in a bedroom in her Anaheim home.

After the murder, the defendant is accused of calling 911. The Anaheim Police Department responded to the scene, located the victim, and arrested the defendant. The victim was transported the hospital, where she died of her injuries.

Senior Deputy District Attorney Steve McGreevy of the Homicide Unit is prosecuting this case.

Orange County District Attorney / Case # TBA / October 29, 2013

 

October 28, 2013

MAN CHARGED WITH STABBING-MURDER OF VICTIM IN HUNTINGTON BEACH APARTMENT

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 7:33 pm

WESTMINSTER – A man has been charged with the stabbing-murder of a 51-year-old victim in a Huntington Beach apartment. Rito Samuel Tejeda, 22, Santa Ana, was charged today with one felony count of murder with a sentencing enhancement for the personal use of a deadly weapon and faces a maximum sentence of 26 years to life in state prison if convicted. Tejeda is being held on $1 million bail and is scheduled for a continued arraignment Nov. 22, 2013, at 8:30 a.m. in Department W-1, West Justice Center, Westminster. The time is to be determined.

On the morning of Oct. 23, 2013, Tejeda is accused of murdering 51-year-old Frederick Sledge in a Huntington Beach apartment by stabbing him repeatedly. The defendant is accused of fleeing the scene on foot, covered in blood.

Just before noon, Tejeda is accused of walking in the vicinity of Delaware Street and Knoxville Avenue in Huntington Beach and was observed with blood on his skin and clothes by an off-duty officer, who contacted the Huntington Beach Police Department (HBPD). Tejeda was transported to the hospital for treatment of superficial wounds.

HBPD immediately began investigating this case and located the victim in the nearby apartment. The investigation is ongoing.

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October 25, 2013

MAN SENTENCED TO THREE YEARS IN PRISON FOR PANDERING TEENAGER AND POSTING SEX AD ON WEBSITE

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 4:16 am

SANTA ANA – A man was convicted and sentenced today for pandering a teenage woman and posting an advertisement featuring the victim on a website known for prostitution. Davion D’Anthony Johnson-Harris, 24, Anaheim, pleaded guilty to one felony count of pandering and was sentenced to three years in state prison.

Circumstances of the Case

Johnson-Harris is a pimp who exploits women and/or children financial gain. The defendant exploited 18-year-old Jane Doe for commercial sex. For approximately four days, the defendant instructed Jane Doe on how much money to bring in for specific sex acts.

During an undercover sting operation, Anaheim Police Department (APD) officers responded to an advertisement on a website known for prostitution offering sex with Jane Doe. The undercover officer met Jane Doe in a hotel room for sex and determined that she was being exploited by Johnson-Harris. On May 24, 2013, APD arrested Johnson-Harris.

This case was investigated by APD and Deputy District Attorney Daniel Varon of the HEAT Unit is prosecuting this case.

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MAN FACES CHARGES FOR ROLE IN $150 MILLION INVESTMENT FRAUD IN LARGEST PONZI SCHEME IN ORANGE COUNTY HISTORY

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 4:13 am

SANTA ANA – A man surrendered to the court today on a $17 million warrant for his role in a $150 million investment fraud Ponzi scheme, in which at least 80 Orange County victims lost over $21 million. This is the largest Ponzi scheme to be prosecuted in Orange County history.

Adam Jay Boskovich, 43, Laguna Niguel, is charged with 32 felony counts of the use of untrue statements in the purchase or sale of a security with a sentencing enhancement allegation for causing over $100,000 in loss. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 45 years in state prison. Boskovich was charged Oct. 22, 2013, and turned himself in to the court on the warrant today, Oct. 24, 2013. He is out of custody on $1 million bail and is scheduled for a continued arraignment Dec. 20, 2013, at 8:30 a.m. in Department C-57, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

Co-Defendant

Co-defendant Gerard Frank Cellette, 48, formerly of Anoka County, MN, is accused of masterminding and committing the crime without ever entering the State of California. Cellette is charged (Case # 12CF1917) with 116 felony counts including 46 counts of selling unregistered securities, 43 counts of money laundering, and 27 counts of using an untrue statement in the purchase and sale of a security, with sentencing enhancements and allegations for property damage over $3.2 million, money laundering transactions in excess of $2.5 million, aggravated white collar crime over $500,000, and causing over $100,000 loss. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 104 years in state prison.

Cellette is being held on $21 million bail and must prove the money is from a legal and legitimate source before posting bond. He was extradited from Minnesota to Orange County in February 2013 by Investigators from the Orange County District Attorney’s (OCDA) Bureau of Investigation. He is scheduled for a preliminary hearing Oct. 29, 2013, at 8:30 a.m. in Department C-57, Central Justice Center.

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MOTHER TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES MURDER OF HER TWO CHILDREN BY POSIONING THEM AFTER LOSING CUSTODY BATTLE

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 4:05 am

SANTA ANA - A mother is scheduled to be arraigned tomorrow for special circumstances murder for poisoning her two children after losing custody of them to her former husband. Marilyn Kay Edge, 42, Scottsdale, Ariz., is charged with two felony counts of murder with special circumstance enhancements for committing multiple murders and murder by poisoning. If convicted, she faces a minimum sentence of life in state prison without the possibility of parole. Edge is eligible for the death penalty, and the District Attorney will make this determination at a later date. She is being held without bail and is scheduled for continued arraignment tomorrow, Oct. 25, 2013, at 10:00 a.m. in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana.

On Sept. 11, 2013, Edge lost custody of her two children, 10-year-old Faith E. and 13-year-old Jaelen E., at a family court hearing in Georgia, where her ex-husband lives, following a court ruling. Edge was ordered to submit her children to the Court on Sept. 15, 2013.

On Sept. 12, 2013, Edge is accused of driving from Georgia to Arizona, where her children were living, and then driving them to California under the false pretense that they were going on a family vacation. The defendant is accused of staying in a Santa Ana hotel with her children.

Late in the evening of Sept. 13, 2013, Edge is accused of murdering her two children by poisoning them.

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