Best Defender Bytes:

March 31, 2014


Filed under: Los Angeles sexual assault attorney — fayarfa @ 5:56 am

SANTA ANA – A Boston man was convicted and sentenced today to eight years in state prison and mandatory lifetime sex offender registration for sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl in 1995, contacting her in 2011 through Facebook, and flying out to Southern California to meet her again. Vanna Hong, 45, Boston, MA, pleaded guilty today to three felony counts of lewd acts upon a child under 14. The People were able to file this case beyond the statute of limitations based on clear and convincing admissible evidence that corroborates the victim’s allegations.

In January 1995, 28-year-old Hong met 12-year-old Jane Doe when she was visiting Orange County from Rhode Island. He drove to California a few times to visit her and then flew roundtrip to sexually assault Jane Doe several more times during that year.

Between January 1995 and February 1995, Hong took Jane Doe to a Garden Grove motel and had unlawful sexual intercourse with her.

Between March 1, 1995, and Feb. 29, 1996, he took the victim to The Alamo Inn in Anaheim several times and engaged in unlawful sexual intercourse, orally copulating and digitally penetrating the victim.



Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:50 am

SANTA ANA – A man was sentenced today to four years in state prison for killing a pedestrian by crashing into the victim with his car and then fleeing the scene. Victor Manuel Arredondo Anaya, 28, Santa Ana, was found guilty by a jury, Feb. 5, 2014, of one felony count of hit and run causing death and one misdemeanor count of vehicular manslaughter without gross negligence.

At approximately 6:30 a.m. on Jan. 10, 2013, Anaya was driving a BMW heading southbound on Orange Avenue approaching Stanford Street in Santa Ana. He hit 75-year-old Miguel Ceja, who was lawfully crossing in an unmarked crosswalk on Orange Avenue. Anaya struck the victim’s left side with his car, causing Ceja to crash onto the hood of the car and hit his head on the windshield. Ceja then struck the left side mirror before being thrown from the vehicle and tumbling into the driver’s door of a parked car. Anaya failed to stop to assist the victim and continued driving. Ceja was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Santa Ana Police Department (SAPD) responded and investigated this case and information regarding the crime and the make and model of the defendant’s car was provided to the media and public.

On Jan. 12, 2013, SAPD dispatch received a call from a civilian witness, who was driving at the intersection of Grand Avenue and First Street in Santa Ana and believed he was following the vehicle that may have been involved in the fatal crash.



Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:47 am

SANTA ANA – A defendant was sentenced today to 15 years to life in state prison for murdering a man after an argument. Edgar Salvador Luciozamudio, 24, Buena Park, was found guilty by a jury, March 6, 2014, of one felony count of second degree murder.

Prior to Dec. 14, 2011, Luciozamudio was friendly with 47-year-old Ricardo Rios for approximately four to five months. On Dec. 14, 2011, the defendant was with Rios in a detached garage, where the victim lived.

At approximately 3:30 a.m., Luciozamudio was thrown out of Rios’ garage following a verbal argument. Luciozamudio exchanged angry words with Rios as he was on the driveway by his sedan.

The victim threw a small metal weight that struck Luciozamudio’s car. The defendant then chased Rios back to his converted garage and attacked him by punching him repeatedly, breaking the victim’s jaw, nose, orbital bone, and several ribs.


March 28, 2014


Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 4:08 am

SANTA ANA – A man was convicted today of sexually assaulting two women in Irvine and Newport Beach. Travis Dewayne Batten, Jr., 31, Irvine, was found guilty by a jury of two felony counts of forcible rape, one felony count each of assault with intent to commit a sexual offense, assault with intent to commit a sexual offense during the commission of first degree burglary, sodomy by force, sexual penetration by foreign object by force, and kidnapping to commit a sex offense. The sentencing enhancement allegations for committing sexual offenses during the commission of a burglary and tying up or binding a person were found true. Batten faces a maximum sentence of 120 years to life in state prison at his sentencing, May 23, 2014, at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-27, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

Between May 2005 and November 2006, Batten broke into the residences of two women, whom he did not know, while wearing a mask. He raped an Irvine woman and sexually assaulted a woman who lived in Newport Beach.

At approximately 9:00 p.m. on May 20, 2005, Batten, then-23, wore a mask and broke into the Newport Beach residence of 40-year-old Jane Doe #1 while she was out. When the victim arrived home, the defendant attacked her and threw Jane Doe #1 to the ground. Batten forced the victim to her bedroom and duct taped her hands and mouth. He sexually assaulted Jane Doe #1’s breasts and vagina. Batten then punched the victim twice in the head and threatened the victim by stating he would come back and get her if she contacted police. He then fled the scene. Jane Doe #1 called 911.

Newport Beach Police Department officers responded to the scene and investigated the case. Batten left DNA at the scene, which was collected by police, processed by Orange County Crime Laboratory (OCCL), and entered in the local DNA database.



Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 4:06 am

SANTA ANA – A speeding driver under the influence of drugs is scheduled to be arraigned tomorrow for driving through a red light and killing a woman crossing the intersection at a shopping center. Paul Collins Pike, 32, Orange, is charged with one felony count of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence while intoxicated and driving under the influence of drugs causing bodily injury with sentencing enhancement allegations for causing great bodily injury, prior strike conviction for first degree burglary in 2001, and prior prison convictions for first degree burglary in 2001, possession of a dirk or dagger in 2003, and possessing a weapon while incarcerated in 2007. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 28 years in state prison. He is being held on $100,000 bail and is scheduled to be arraigned tomorrow, March 28, 2014, at 10:00 a.m. in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana.

At approximately 7:00 p.m. on Feb. 23, 2014, Pike is accused of driving his Ford Explorer, while under the influence of methamphetamine, at a high rate of speed on La Palma Avenue in Buena Park. He is accused of speeding through a red light at the intersection of La Palma Avenue and Buena Park Downtown East Street and hitting 45-year-old Angela C. as she was legally crossing the intersection in a marked crosswalk and causing a collision involving six other vehicles.

The victim was transported to University of California, Irvine Medical Center in Orange, where she died from her injuries suffered in the crash.

Deputy District Attorney Anna McIntire of the Homicide Unit is prosecuting this case.

Orange County District Attorney / Case # 14NF135 / March 27, 2014

Disbarred Attorney Sentenced to Prison

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 4:03 am

A disbarred attorney who admitted stealing more than $3 million from clients, including the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, was sentenced today to 10 years in state prison and ordered to pay restitution, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

James Vincent Reiss, 52, was ordered to pay $2.47 million to the MTA and $511,607 to a former client, said Deputy District Attorney Amy Pellman Pentz with the Justice System Integrity Division.

Reiss, who pleaded no contest to two counts of grand theft, was under contract with MTA to handle their general liability claims. Between 2010 and 2011, he received nearly $2 million in fraudulent reimbursements from MTA, Pentz said.

As part of his March 11 plea, Reiss also admitted stealing money from a former client by settling an insurance lawsuit and pocketing the settlement money, Pentz said.

Los Angeles County District Attorney / March 26, 2014

March 27, 2014

O.C. Firm Pays $500,000 to Resolve Allegations it Violated the Buy American Act by Selling Foreign-Made Medical Devices to Army

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 2:09 am

LOS ANGELES – Prosthetics supplier Ossur Americas, Inc. today paid the United States $500,000 to resolve allegations that the Orange County company supplied the Army with hundreds of foreign-made prosthetic, bracing and support products –while falsely certifying that all of its products were manufactured in the United States as required by federal law and its contracts with the military.

Ossur, which is headquartered in Foothill Ranch, paid the money today pursuant to a settlement agreement that resolves allegations that it had violated the federal False Claims Act by falsely certifying compliance with the Buy American Act. The alleged conduct took place in 2005 and 2006 and involved prosthetic components for wounded soldiers.

The Buy American Act generally prohibits federal government agencies from purchasing foreign-made products, and Ossur’s compliance with the Act was expressly required by its contracts with the Army.

Ossur became aware that it had made the prohibited sales in early 2006, and entered the Department of Defense’s Voluntary Disclosure Program in December 2006. The government subsequently investigated Ossur’s disclosure. In conjunction with Ossur’s voluntary disclosure, the company instituted a series of compliance measures, including distribution of instruction sheets to sales representatives and training for management officials, to ensure future compliance with the Buy America Act.


Charges dropped in stock manipulation case

Filed under: Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 2:04 am

Federal prosecutors dismiss charges against Sherman Mazur and eight others after concluding that wiretap evidence was inadmissible.

Federal prosecutors in Los Angeles dismissed criminal charges against nine people in a $30-million stock-manipulation case after concluding that misstatements in obtaining court approval for key wiretap recordings made the evidence unusable at trial.

The dismissals were an embarrassing setback for prosecutors who were bursting with pride last year when they announced the indictments, the result of a three-year investigation.

U.S. Atty. Andre Birotte Jr. said investigators had relied heavily on wiretap evidence, which is rarely used in white-collar cases.

On Tuesday, prosecutors moved to dismiss the charges against Sherman Mazur and eight other defendants, concluding that the wiretap evidence was not admissible because of omissions and misstatements in an application to record the suspects telephone calls.


Agents Seize 176 lbs. of Methamphetamine in Central Valley

Filed under: Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 2:01 am

FRESNO – Agents from a California Department of Justice task force joined with California Highway Patrol and federal investigators Thursday night to seize 176 pounds of crystal methamphetamine during the execution of a search warrant at a Madera home. The seizure is one of the largest methamphetamine caches uncovered in the Central Valley.

“Methamphetamine is a very serious threat to California’s public health and safety, and is frequently trafficked by transnational criminal organizations,” Attorney General Harris said. “This seizure highlights the importance of strong collaboration between the California Department of Justice and local, state and federal partners to dismantle these organizations and keep our communities safe.”

Thursday night’s seizure came just hours after Attorney General Harris issued the first comprehensive report analyzing the current state of transnational criminal organizations in California and the threats they pose to the state’s public safety and economy. The report estimates that Mexican organized crime groups smuggle an estimated 70 percent of the foreign-produced U.S. supply of methamphetamine through California’s border crossings. View the report here:

Preliminary evidence indicates the methamphetamine in the residence was likely smuggled into the U.S. from Mexico in liquid form, then converted into its crystalized form at the Madera residence for subsequent distribution.

Agents discovered the methamphetamine, much of it in crystalized form, scattered throughout multiple rooms in the Madera residence. They also found a lab used to convert liquid methamphetamine into its crystalized form. While initial estimates place the value of the seized methamphetamine at approximately $750,000, authorities say it could exceed $1 million, pending final laboratory tests to determine its purity. (more…)

March 26, 2014

Former L.A. City Building Inspector Sentenced to 2½ Years in Federal Prison for Taking Tens of Thousands of Dollars in Bribe Payments

Filed under: Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 4:41 am

LOS ANGELES – A former inspector with the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety (LADBS) was sentenced today to 30 months in federal prison for taking more than $30,000 in bribes in relation to at least a dozen properties in and around the Koreatown District of Los Angeles.

Samuel In, 66, of Glendale, a 37-year veteran of LADBS, pleaded guilty just over one year ago to one count of bribery. According to court documents, In took bribe payments – which he described to some victims as “fees” – from 2007 through the end of 2010. In admitted that he solicited and accepted bribery payments totaling more than $30,000 in connection with his official duties in relation to at least a dozen Koreatown properties.

Federal prosecutors asked United States District Judge Dean D. Pregerson to impose a 30-month prison term, reasoning that In took bribes as part of a “deliberate, long-running pattern of corruption.”

In a sentencing memo filed with the court, prosecutor wrote: “This recommended sentence appropriately accounts for the serious nature of defendant’s illegal course of conduct — abusing his position as a senior building inspector over a number of years to solicit and take bribes in return for approving numerous building projects that may or may not have been safe.”


Older Posts »

Powered by WordPress