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July 9, 2015

ATF Increases Reward In Armed Robbery Of Federal Firearms Licensee to $10,000.00

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — fayarfa @ 5:54 am

ATF and Azusa Police Department Looking for Three Suspects

Los Angeles — The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) in conjunction with the Azusa Police Department, are seeking the public’s assistance to identify the persons responsible for the May 24, 2015, armed robbery of Azusa Pawn, a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL), located in the 1000 block of West Gladstone Street in Azusa, Calif. There is a $10,000.00 reward offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the suspects captured on store video surveillance footage.

According to witness reports and surveillance footage, on May 24, 2015, at approximately 1:50 p.m., one black male adult suspect entered Azusa pawn and spent 15-20 minutes looking at jewelry and firearms displayed for sale then exited the store. At approximately 2:35 p.m., three black male adult suspects entered the location and ordered the employees to lie facedown on the floor. The suspects ransacked the location and ordered an employee to open the safe at gunpoint. Another employee was kicked in the face during the robbery, suffering a broken nose. Investigators believe the male who entered the store at 1:50 p.m. is possibly associated with, or one of, the three males who committed the armed robbery.

While the robbery was being committed, a father and his young son entered the business. The father and child were ordered onto the ground by the suspects. The suspects stole an iPod the child was carrying with him. The suspects got away with a large amount of jewelry and eight firearms. They were seen entering a dark-colored SUV, possibly a Saturn. The SUV narrowly missed hitting a pedestrian outside the pawn shop, then fled east on Gladstone Street.

The Azusa Police Department and ATF are concerned that these criminals may still be on the street, able to commit additional acts of violence. This was a dangerous robbery that unlawfully placed additional firearms into our community. We are asking that anyone who recalls the events of that day or recognizes the individuals, even if only by nickname, address, school or workplace, contact us immediately.

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October 15, 2014

Former Councilman, Wife Sentenced in Perjury, Voter Fraud Case

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — fayarfa @ 12:03 am

Former Los Angeles City Councilman Richard Alarcon and his wife were sentenced today for lying about living at a Panorama City house after he was elected, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Superior Court Judge George Lomeli first denied defense motions for a new trial. He then sentenced Alarcon to 120 days in county jail, ordered him to complete 600 hours of community service and barred the former councilman and former state legislator from ever holding elective office again. In addition, Alarcon was placed on formal probation for five years.

Lomeli ordered Alarcon, 60, to surrender to the court on Dec. 10 to begin his jail sentence.

Flora Montes De Oca Alarcon, 49, was sentenced to 400 hours of community service and placed on probation f0r five years. She also was barred from ever holding elective office.

Lomeli ordered both defendants to do their community service in Los Angeles City Council District 7, where he was elected to serve but where he wasn’t living. (more…)

March 13, 2014

Federal Inmate Pleads Guilty to Murder of United States Correctional Officer

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — fayarfa @ 12:30 am

A federal inmate pleaded guilty today for the murder of United States Correctional Officer Jose Rivera, announced Acting Assistant Attorney General Mythili Raman of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney Benjamin Wagner for the Eastern District of California.

James Ninete Leon Guerrero, 48, of Guam, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Phillip Pro to one count of murder by a federal prisoner serving a life sentence.  According to court documents, Guerrero aided and abetted co-defendant Jose Cabrera Sablan in the stabbing death of Officer Rivera.

Court documents allege that on June 20, 2008, as Officer Rivera was on duty, conducting his daily count in the United States Penitentiary in Atwater, Calif., Sablan attacked him with an eight-inch homemade shank.  Officer Rivera tried to flee, but he was knocked backwards by Sablan and tackled by Guerrero.  Guerrero held Officer Rivera down as Sablan stabbed him with the shank more than 20 times.  Officer Rivera was 22 years old at the time of his death and was a United States Navy veteran.

Sablan and Guerrero were indicted for murder on Aug. 14, 2008.  As a result of Guerrero’s plea, he faces a mandatory sentence of life in prison.  His sentencing has been scheduled for May 30, 2014, in the Eastern District of California.

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October 3, 2013

SEX PURCHASER CONVICTED FOR SOLICITING SEX FROM WOMAN WHOM HE BELIEVED TO BE PROSTITUTE

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — fayarfa @ 7:54 pm

SANTA ANA – A sex purchaser was convicted and sentenced today for soliciting sex from a woman whom he believed to be a prostitute. Manuel De Jesus Monzon, 41, Riverside, pleaded guilty today to one misdemeanor count of agreeing to engage in prostitution. Monzon was sentenced to three years of informal probation, 10 days in jail with the possibility of CalTrans in lieu of jail, and must submit to AIDS testing and education.

At approximately 10:20 p.m. on June 26, 2013, Monzon approached an undercover female officer, whom he believed to be a prostitute, near 1100 North Harbor Boulevard in Santa Ana. Monzon agreed to purchase sex services from the undercover officer and drove her to a nearby motel where he was arrested by officers from the Santa Ana Police Department (SAPD).

The area of 1100 North Harbor Boulevard in Santa Ana is known to law enforcement to be a high-prostitution area and is known to frequently be used by individuals who sexually exploit and traffic women and underage girls for financial gain, including pimps, panderers, and human traffickers.

This case was prosecuted by the Orange County District Attorney’s Human Exploitation And Trafficking (HEAT) Unit, which targets perpetrators who sexually exploit and traffic women and underage girls for financial gain, including pimps, panderers, and human traffickers. Commercial sex trafficking is the second most lucrative criminal enterprise behind narcotics trafficking. Often the perpetrators are gang members and/or career criminals.                                                                     (more…)

September 17, 2013

TWO SEX PURCHASERS CONVICTED FOR AGREEING TO ENGAGE IN COMMERCIAL SEX WITH WOMAN

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — fayarfa @ 12:26 am

SANTA ANA – Two sex purchasers were convicted and sentenced Thursday for agreeing to engage in commercial sex with a woman whom they believed to be a prostitute. Elijah David Venegas, 30, Whittier, and Jason Paul Smith 33, Buena Park, each pleaded guilty Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013, to one misdemeanor count of agreeing to engage in prostitution. Venegas was sentenced three years of informal probation, 10 days in jail with the possibility of CalTrans in lieu of jail, and must submit to AIDS testing and education. Smith was sentenced three years of informal probation, 30 days in jail with the possibility of CalTrans in lieu of jail, and must submit to AIDS testing and education.

At approximately 4:40 a.m. on July 10, 2013, Venegas drove his car up to a woman in the area of 3500 West Hazard Avenue in Santa Ana and engaged in a brief conversation with her before she got inside the vehicle. A Santa Ana Police Department (SAPD) officer observed the interaction and arrested Venegas for soliciting sex from the woman.

The area of 3500 West Hazard Avenue in Santa Ana is known to law enforcement to be a high-prostitution area and is known to frequently be used by individuals who sexually exploit and traffic women and underage girls for financial gain, including pimps, panderers, and human traffickers.

At approximately 4:00 p.m. on July 31, 2013, Smith responded to an advertisement on a website known for prostitution. Smith agreed to meet with a female Buena Park Police Department (BPPD) undercover officer, whom he believed to be a prostitute. BPPD arrested Smith when he attempted to meet with the undercover officer at a motel for commercial sex.                                                          (more…)

September 10, 2013

District Attorney Jackie Lacey Responds to Report on State’s Three Strikes Resentencing Law

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — fayarfa @ 12:20 am

District Attorney Jackie Lacey said today that her office has completed evaluations of approximately 40 percent of the 1,078 cases filed in Los Angeles County under Proposition 36, California’s recently revised Three Strikes Law.

The office’s Third Strike Resentencing Unit has taken the lead in resentencing 260 inmates, as of Aug. 29, 2013. Forty (40) more inmates are awaiting resentencing in Los Angeles County. In addition, the District Attorney’s office has opposed resentencing in 170 cases.

“Proposition 36 did not open the prison doors to every inmate eligible for resentencing under California’s revised Three Strikes Law,” Lacey said. “Voters intentionally placed a high burden on prosecutors to protect public safety by conducting exhaustive reviews of each inmate’s criminal record to determine if he or she is, in fact, suitable for release back into our communities. These are difficult decisions that have lasting effect on the quality of life in Los Angeles County.”

Lacey asked the public to measure her office’s commitment to Proposition 36 by the total number of cases evaluated – not the number of inmates resentenced. “The law is very clear: It does not require resentencing,” the District Attorney said. “It requires a thorough evaluation of the inmate’s criminal history and incarceration record to determine if he or she poses an unreasonable risk of danger to public safety.”

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August 15, 2013

PAROLE BOARD FINDS INMATE CONVICTED OF 1980 STABBING-MURDER OF MARINE SUITABLE FOR PAROLE OVER OBJECTION OF OCDA

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — fayarfa @ 5:37 pm

SANTA ANA – Despite opposition by the Orange County District Attorney’s Office (OCDA), the Board of Parole Hearings (Board), California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, determined Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2013, that an inmate convicted of murdering a Marine in 1980 is suitable for parole. Roy Garcia Garcia, 54, was convicted of one felony count of second degree murder and sentenced on Feb. 19, 1981, to 20 years to life in state prison. The case was originally prosecuted by former Deputy District Attorney Paul Meyer.

Orange County Senior Deputy District Attorney Jim Mendelson attended the hearing yesterday to oppose Garcia’s parole and argued that despite the inmate conforming to prison rules and regulations after so many years of incarceration, Garcia is still entirely devoid of any insight into why he murdered a fellow Marine. The Board concluded that Garcia still lacks insight but in light of everything else, he does not pose an unreasonable danger of risk to society. The inmate’s parole suitability will now go before California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. The Governor has the authority to accept or reverse the Board’s decision to grant Garcia parole.

In February 2010, Garcia was found suitable for parole but Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger reversed the Board’s previous decision to parole Garcia primarily because the inmate had not demonstrated any insight into his actions and posed an unreasonable risk to public safety by failing to accept responsibility for his crime.

To read more about OCDA’s parole opposition of Garcia, please visit www.orangecountyda.com and select “OCDA to Oppose Parole of Inmate Convicted of 1980 Stabbing-Murder of Marine Over $10 Loan,” under Press Releases/Media Advisories on the homepage.

Orange County District Attorney / For Immediate Release / August 15, 2013

July 11, 2013

MAN CONVICTED AND SENTENCED FOR PICKING UP PROSTITUTE AND ARRANGING TO PURCHASE SEX

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — fayarfa @ 8:13 pm

WESTMINSTER - A man has been convicted and sentenced for picking up a prostitute and arranging to pay her $30 for sex. This defendant was arrested after the April 2013 creation of the Orange County District Attorney’s (OCDA) Human Exploitation And Trafficking (HEAT) Unit and is the first to be convicted after the OCDA’s announcement that the identities of convicted sex purchases will be publicized. Hugo Perez, 31, pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of agreeing to engage in prostitution and one misdemeanor count of driving without a license. He was sentenced to three years of informal probation, 15 days in jail with the possibility of CalTrans in lieu of jail, and must submit to AIDS testing and education.

The area of Beach Boulevard and Chapman Avenue in Stanton is known to law enforcement to be a high-prostitution area and is known to frequently be used by individuals who sexually exploit and traffic women and underage girls for financial gain, including pimps, panderers, and human traffickers.

On May 2, 2013, a deputy from the Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) observed a female working as a prostitute on Beach Boulevard near Chapman Avenue in Stanton. Perez stopped his car near Beach Boulevard and the female approached Perez’s car window and then got into the vehicle. The defendant drove without a valid license to a nearby motel. The OCSD deputy followed the vehicle to the Jade Motel in Stanton and contacted the defendant. Perez admitted to the deputy that he had picked up a prostitute and was going to pay her $30 for sex.

This case was prosecuted by the OCDA’s HEAT Unit, which targets perpetrators who sexually exploit and traffic women and underage girls for financial gain, including pimps, panderers, and human traffickers. Commercial sex trafficking is the second most lucrative criminal enterprise behind narcotics trafficking. Often the perpetrators are gang members and/or career criminals.

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June 5, 2013

MAN FACES TRIAL FOR SHOOTING-MURDER OF ESTRANGED WIFE AFTER FOLLOWING HER FROM WORK

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — fayarfa @ 8:04 pm

SANTA ANA – A man faces trial tomorrow for murdering his estranged wife by shooting her nine times in the chest after following her from work. John Rand Agosta, 37, Anaheim, is charged with one felony count of murder with a sentencing enhancement for the personal discharge of a firearm causing death. If convicted, he faces a minimum sentence of 50 years to life in state prison. Opening statements are expected to begin tomorrow, Thursday, June 6, 2013, at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-29, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

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

When Hernandez left work for 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, turning her over using his foot, and then fleeing the scene on foot. The Ford Mustang, which is registered to the defendant, was left at the scene.

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TWO PIMPS CHARGED WITH TRAFFICKING VICTIM FROM MEXICO AND FORCING HER INTO PROSTITUTION IN ANAHEIM APARTMENT

Filed under: Los Angeles Criminal attorney — fayarfa @ 7:57 pm

SANTA ANA – Two men acting as pimps were arraigned today on charges of trafficking a victim from Mexico to Orange County and forcing her to engage in prostitution against her will to pay off a debt for an ill family member. Victor Lara Romero, 32, and Gustavo Romero Clemente, 35, both of Anaheim, are each charged with one felony count of human trafficking, one felony count of pimping, and one felony count of pandering by procuring. If convicted, both defendants face a maximum sentence of 20 years in state prison. Romero and Clemente were arraigned today post-preliminary hearing and are being held on $500,000 bail. They are scheduled for a pre-trial trial setting conference on June 26, 2013, at 8:45 a.m. in Department C-5, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

Circumstances of the Case

Romero and Clemente are accused of being pimps/modern-day slave owners who exploit women and/or children for financial gain.

Prior to December 2012, Romero is accused of being acquainted with 29-year-old Jane Doe in her hometown in Mexico and giving her money when a family member became ill.  A few weeks later, Jane Doe was unable to repay the money and Romero is accused of telling her that he could smuggle her into the United States to work at a clothing store to pay off her debt. Romero is accused of arranging for Jane Doe to be smuggled into Southern California by way of Texas. He is accused of failing to set up a legitimate job for the victim.

Between Dec. 24, 2012, and Jan. 24, 2013, approximately one month after arriving in California, Romero is accused of moving Jane Doe into a room in Clemente’s Anaheim apartment. Once in Anaheim, Romero is accused of ordering Jane Doe to prostitute herself to repay the debt. When Jane Doe resisted and refused, Romero is accused of physically beating the victim on numerous occasions including strangling and punching her, burning her leg with a fork, and beating her with a belt. The defendant is accused of causing bruising to Jane Doe’s face and forcing her to wear makeup to cover the bruises.

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