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February 28, 2017

Orange County Man Sentenced to 190 Years in Federal Prison for Traveling to Philippines to Molest Young Girls and Filming the Abuse

Filed under: California Chid Pornography Attorney — fayarfa @ 7:29 am

SANTA ANA, California – A onetime school teacher who traveled to the Philippines to engage in sex with two girls and produced videos of the abuse was ordered today to serve 190 years in federal prison.

Robert Ruben Ornelas, 66, of Santa Ana, who has a long history of abusing children, received the 2,280-month sentence from United States District Judge Cormac J. Carney.

During today’s hearing, Judge Carney said Ornelas molested children in a “cruel manner” and the defendant demonstrated a complete disregard for his victims’ humanity.

Ornelas was found guilty in November by a federal jury of seven counts – two counts of engaging in sexual conduct in a foreign place, three counts of producing child pornography, and two counts of possessing child pornography.

The evidence presented during a six-day trial showed that Ornelas traveled to the Philippines on multiple occasions. He was convicted in relation to three specific trips – in 2006, 2008 and 2012 – where he sexually assaulted two girls who were as young as approximately eight. During all three trips, Ornelas took videos of the molestation and brought the images with him when he returned the U.S.

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Man Sentenced to Prison for Killing Girlfriend, Dumping Body in Canyon

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 7:26 am

A 40-year-old man was sentenced today to 50 years to life in state prison for fatally shooting his girlfriend and dumping her body in Hacienda Heights six years ago, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

On Feb. 24, a jury found Francisco Nila Rojas guilty of first-degree murder in case KA094021. Jurors also found true a special allegation that the defendant personally and intentionally used a deadly and dangerous weapon, a gun, which caused great bodily injury and death.

Deputy District Attorney Babette Huley of the Victim Impact Program, who prosecuted the case, said on Feb. 18, 2011, Rojas shot his girlfriend, Claudia Tecuautzin, 41, in the head.

The defendant then dumped Tecuautzin’s body near Turnbull Canyon Road and Skyline Drive in Hacienda Heights. The victim’s body was discovered less than a month after she was killed, the prosecutor added.

Five days after the killing, Rojas fled from the United States and went to Mexico. In October 2015, Rojas was located and extradited to Los Angeles County to face criminal prosecution for the killing.

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Man Convicted of Killing Sister in San Gabriel

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 7:24 am

A 32-year-old man was convicted yesterday afternoon of fatally shooting his sister in 2015, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

The jury deliberated for a day before finding Johnny Goins of Pasadena guilty of four counts in case GA095841: one count of first-degree murder, one count of willful, premeditated and deliberate attempted murder two counts of shooting at an inhabited dwelling.

Jurors also found true a special allegation that the defendant personally and intentionally discharged a firearm, which caused death during the commission of the murder.

Goins is scheduled to be sentenced April 6 in Department T of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Alhambra Branch. The defendant faces a maximum possible sentence of 77 years to life in state prison.

Deputy District Attorney Presciliano Duran of the Victim Impact Program, who prosecuted the case, said at the time of the crime Johnny Goins was angry with his sister, Tanaya Goins, 32.

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February 27, 2017

NEPHEW CONVICTED OF SHOOTING-MURDER OF UNCLE AFTER ARGUMENT AT BIRTHDAY PARTY

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:09 am

SANTA ANA, Calif. – A nephew was convicted yesterday of shooting and murdering his uncle after an argument at a birthday party. Daniel Lee Duvall, 39, Westminster, was found guilty by a jury on Feb. 23, 2017, of one felony count of first degree murder, and a sentencing enhancement for personal discharge of a firearm causing death was found true. Duvall faces a maximum sentence of 80 years to life in state prison. The court will hear a bifurcated trial on Duvall’s prior felony conviction for transportation of a controlled substance and possession of a firearm by a felon for the benefit of a criminal street gang in 2002 at his sentencing on April 14, 2017, at 8:30 a.m. in Department C-38, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

Co-defendant Tina Pauline Arbogast, 49, Westminster, is charged with one felony count of accessory after the fact. If convicted, the defendant faces a maximum sentence of three years in state prison. Arbogast is scheduled for a pre-trial hearing on April 14, 2017, at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-5, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

On the evening of March 8, 2015, Daniel Duvall attended a birthday party being held for Arbogast at her home in Westminster. Approximately 15 to 20 people were in attendance at the party.

At approximately 10:00 p.m., Daniel Duvall got into a verbal argument with his uncle, 56-year-old Frank Duvall, inside the home. At some point during the argument, Daniel Duvall brandished a loaded firearm.

Daniel Duvall then followed his uncle out of the party as the victim was attempting to leave in his van. Daniel Duvall shot Frank Duvall once in the torso as the victim sat in the driver’s side of his van. The victim died as a result of the gunshot wound.

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MAN SENTENCED TO 11 YEARS IN PRISON FOR PIMPING FOUR WOMEN AND SMASHING CAR WINDOW WHEN ONE VICTIM ATTEMPTED TO ESCAPE

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:06 am

SANTA ANA, Calif. – A man was sentenced today to 11 years and four months in state prison today for pimping four women and smashing a car window when one of the victims attempted to escape. Clifford Tyrone Lawrence, 28, San Francisco, pleaded guilty on Feb. 21, 2017, to four felony counts of pimping, one felony count of pandering, and one misdemeanor count of vandalism causing damage of $400 or more.

Circumstances of the Case

Lawrence is a pimp who exploits women for financial gain. The victims are often required to turn over all payment they receive for sex acts from sex purchasers to their pimp.

Between Aug. 14, 2015, and Sept. 6, 2015, Lawrence recruited and encouraged Jane Doe 5 to engage in commercial sex acts for his benefit.

On Nov. 26, 2015, Lawrence met and began a romantic relationship with Jane Doe 1. The defendant travelled with Jane Doe 1 to areas known for prostitution and human trafficking in Orange County and promised the victim a better life if she engaged in commercial sex for his benefit. Between Nov. 26, 2015, and Feb. 22, 2016, Lawrence recruited Jane Doe 2, Jane Doe 3, and Jane Doe 4 to engage in commercial sex acts for his own financial gain.

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Man Convicted of Fatally Shooting Girlfriend, Dumping Body in Canyon

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:03 am

A 40-year-old man was convicted today of killing his girlfriend and dumping her body in Hacienda Heights six years ago, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

The jury deliberated for less than a day before finding Francisco Nila Rojas guilty of first-degree murder in case KA094021. Jurors also found true a special allegation that the defendant personally and intentionally used a deadly and dangerous weapon, a gun, which caused great bodily injury and death.

Rojas is scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 27 in Department H of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Pomona Branch. The defendant faces a maximum possible sentence of 50 years to life in state prison.

Deputy District Attorney Babette Huley of the Victim Impact Program, who prosecuted the case, said on Feb. 18, 2011, Rojas shot his girlfriend, Claudia Tecuautzin, 41, in the head.

The defendant then dumped Tecuautzin’s body near Turnbull Canyon Road and Skyline Drive in Hacienda Heights. The victim’s body was discovered less than a month after she was killed, the prosecutor added.

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February 24, 2017

Former Baggage Handler at LAX Arrested for Drug Trafficking Conspiracy After Allegedly Using Credentials to Pass Cocaine Through Security

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:09 am

LOS ANGELES – A former baggage handler employed at Los Angeles International Airport was arrested Tuesday for smuggling cocaine by authorities investigating the use of employee credentials to breach airport security.

Alberto H. Botello, 23, of South Gate, was arrested Tuesday evening without incident by law enforcement officers from the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Los Angeles World Airports Police Department.

Botello is charged in a federal indictment with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine and to distribute cocaine. His co-defendants, Adrian Ponce, 28, and Alberto Preciado Gutierrez, 27, both of South Gate, were also former baggage handlers and were arrested by law enforcement in the Spring of 2016. Botello made his initial court appearance Wednesday afternoon in United States District Court in Los Angeles.

According to court documents, Ponce, Preciado Gutierrez, and Botello facilitated the ability of third-party couriers to use commercial airlines to smuggle kilogram “samples” of cocaine from Los Angeles to drug customers on the East Coast. At the time of the conspiracy, Preciado Gutierrez was a supervisory baggage handler employed by Swissport International at LAX.

During the investigation, law enforcement seized a kilogram of cocaine in Preciado Gutierrez’s possession on December 16, 2015. According to court documents, the seizure was made in a restroom in Terminal 3 at LAX, where Preciado Gutierrez was delivering the cocaine to a courier who was holding a boarding pass to travel on a JetBlue flight to New York only an hour later. After this incident Preciado Gutierrez was terminated by Swissport.

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Romanian Man is 12th Defendant Sentenced in ATM Skimming Conspiracy

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:06 am

LOS ANGELES – The 12th man convicted in an ATM skimming scheme has been sentenced to nearly four years in prison.

Oliver Raducu Marian, 37, of Romania, was sentenced yesterday to 46 months in federal prison by United States District Otis D. Wright III. In addition to the prison term, Judge Wright ordered Marian to pay restitution of $799,978.

Marian pleaded guilty in December to conspiracy to commit bank fraud. According to court documents, the conspiracy began as early as November 2012 and continued to October 2013. The conspirators, all Romanian nationals, attached skimming devices and video cameras to ATM machines and vestibules in Los Angeles and Orange Counties, the San Francisco area, and Las Vegas. The equipment was used to capture the customers’ debit card numbers and PIN numbers.

The defendants then downloaded the stolen information to blank cards and withdrew money from the accounts. Over the course of the scheme, the conspirators stole approximately $800,000 in cash from approximately 3,468 victims. The cash was spent on apartments and storage units.

“Although this defendant had fled the United States, U.S. law enforcement in cooperation with foreign law enforcement was able to bring him back to face judgment,” said United States Attorney Eileen M. Decker. “International borders do not deter the Department of Justice from prosecuting those who commit crimes against the U.S.”

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TWO MEN CHARGED WITH KIDNAPPING MAN DURING DRUG DEAL IN NEWPORT BEACH AND ATTEMPTING TO EXTORT $130,000 FROM VICTIM’S FAMILY

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:03 am

SANTA ANA, Calif. – Two men were charged yesterday with kidnapping a man during a drug deal in Newport Beach and attempting to extort $130,000 from the victim’s family. Steele Malone Burnside, 28, Anaheim, and Nicholas Andres Hernandez, 29, Murrieta, are each charged with one felony count of kidnapping for ransom and one felony count of attempted extortion by threat. Hernandez faces sentencing enhancements for prior felony convictions for burglary and filing a false claim in 2009 in Riverside, possession and sale of a controlled substance in 2009 in Riverside, possession of a controlled substance in 2014 in Orange County, and not remaining free for more than five years of both prison custody and the commission of the above felony offenses. If convicted, Burnside and Hernandez face a minimum sentence of 15 years to life in state prison. They are each being held on $2 million bail and are scheduled for a continued arraignment on March 10, 2017, at 10:00 a.m. in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana.

On the afternoon of Feb. 18, 2017, Burnside and Hernandez are accused of kidnapping John Doe during a drug transaction in a shopping center parking lot in Newport Beach. The defendants are accused of driving the victim to an apartment in Anaheim and contacting the victim’s family to demand $130,000. The Newport Beach Police Department (NBPD) investigated this case.

Shortly after midnight on Feb. 20, 2017, Burnside and Hernandez were arrested near the apartment in Anaheim by NBPD.

Senior Deputy District Attorney Cynthia Nichols of the Special Prosecutions Unit is prosecuting this case.

Orange County District Attorney / Case # 17HF0244 / February 23, 2017

February 23, 2017

Attorney General Xavier Becerra Announces Five-Year Prison Sentence for Oswaldo Cabrera of Coalición Latinoamericana Internacional for Defrauding Immigrants

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:09 am

LOS ANGELES – Attorney General Xavier Becerra today announced that Oswaldo Rafael Cabrera, the owner and operator of a Los Angeles-based business known as the Coalición Latinoamericana Internacional (CLI), was sentenced to five years and two months in state prison after pleading guilty to felony charges involving grand theft, attempted perjury and conspiracy to violate the Immigration Consultants Act.  Cabrera’s wife, Maria Marcelina Rodas, was sentenced to three years of felony probation for charges that she conspired to violate the Immigration Consultants Act.

“Taking advantage of the most vulnerable is reprehensible,” said Attorney General Becerra.  “Today’s sentencing puts on notice others who may want to carry out these crimes, and lets hardworking immigrant families know that our office has got their backs. I’d like to thank Deputy Attorneys General Angela Rosenau and Marisol León in our Los Angeles and San Diego offices for their tremendous work on behalf of innocent families.”

In December 2016, the Attorney General’s Office filed criminal charges and obtained arrest warrants against Cabrera and Rodas. The criminal complaint charged Cabrera with 22 felony counts including grand theft, attempted perjury and conspiracy to engage in the unlawful practice of law. The Attorney General’s Office also charged Cabrera and Rodas with conspiracy to commit violations of the Immigration Consultants Act.

After filing the initial complaint, additional victims came forward, and on February 14, 2017, the Attorney General’s Office filed an amended complaint alleging 36 felony counts and two sentence enhancements.

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