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January 11, 2018

Sinaloa Cartel Cell Leader Pleads Guilty For Involvement in the Imporatation of Tons of Narcotics into the United States

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

Sinaloa Cartel cell leader Damaso Lopez-Serrano aka “Mini Lic,” pleaded guilty in federal court today to conspiracy to distribute controlled substances for purpose of unlawful importation following his self-surrender to U.S. law enforcement authorities at the Calexico West, Mexico Port of Entry on July 27, 2017.

Acting Assistant Attorney General John P. Cronan of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney Adam L. Braverman of the Southern District of California made the announcement.

Lopez-Serrano, 29, of Culiacan, Mexico, is believed to be the highest-ranking Mexican cartel leader ever to self-surrender in the United States.  Lopez-Serrano pleaded guilty to all charges in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury in San Diego on Aug. 19, 2016, charging him and five of his close associates with conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine, heroin and cocaine intended for importation and conspiracy to import methamphetamine, heroin and cocaine.

Lopez-Serrano also pleaded guilty to an indictment returned Dec. 4, 2016, in the Eastern District of Virginia by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia and the Criminal Division’s Narcotic and Dangerous Drug Section charging him with conspiracy to distribute cocaine intended for importation. (more…)

HOMELESS MAN LIVING ON SANTA ANA RIVER TRAIL IN ORANGE CHARGED WITH POSSESSING TWO FIREARMS AND MULTIPLE BOXES OF AMMUNITION INSIDE HIS TENT

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

SANTA ANA, Calif. – A homeless man living on the Santa Ana River Trail (SART) in Orange was charged yesterday with possessing two firearms and two boxes of ammunition.

Defendant Charges Maximum Sentence Court Date
Jeffrey Richard Lundell, 47, Santa Ana Charged yesterday with:Felony

  • (2) Possession of a firearm by a felon
  • Possession of ammunition by a felon

Misdemeanor

  • Possession of controlled substance paraphernalia

Sentencing Enhancements

  • Prior strike convictions for residential burglary and assault with a deadly weapon in Texas in 2011
  • Not remaining free for a period of five years or more
Eight years and eight months in state prison Pre-trial hearing

Jan. 18, 2018,

8:30 a.m.

Department C-55, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana

Circumstances of the Case

  • At the time of the crimes, Lundell was on probation and living in a tent on the SART near the city of Orange.
  • On Jan. 5, 2018, deputies from the Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) Homeless Outreach Team who actively patrol the SART area due to the increased dangerousness in the encampments and to provide outreach services to the persons living on the SART contacted the defendant in his tent. (more…)

Man Charged with Stabbing Sheriff’s Deputy in Santa Clarita

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

A 21-year-old man pleaded not guilty today to attacking an officer at a fast-food restaurant Monday morning, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Donald Chinchilla (dob 4/4/96) has been charged with one count of deliberate, premediated, attempted murder of a peace officer in case PA090188.

The defendant is scheduled to return to court on Feb. 14 for a preliminary hearing setting in Department S of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, San Fernando Branch.

The felony complaint includes a special allegation that the defendant personally inflicted great bodily injury to the victim. Additionally, the charging document alleges Chinchilla personally used a deadly and dangerous weapon, a knife, during the commission of the crime.

At today’s arraignment, the defendant’s bail was set at $1.05 million. (more…)

January 10, 2018

Operator of Inland Empire Company Sentenced to 9 Years in Federal Prison for Two Fraud Schemes that Cost Victims over $1 Million

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

LOS ANGELES – A La Crescenta man was sentenced today to nine years in federal prison after pleading guilty to federal fraud charges stemming from two schemes – one that bilked a string of payroll companies, and a second involving fraudulent bills sent to entities ranging from small businesses to local school districts that never received any services.

David William Bell, 55, received the 108-month sentenced from United States District Judge Virginia A. Phillips, who additionally ordered Bell to pay just over $1 million in restitution to payroll companies, hundreds of small businesses and other entities.

Bell was sentenced after he pleaded guilty in August to one count of wire fraud and one count of mail fraud.

Bell ran a company called UST Development, Inc. – which operated in Ontario and Pomona under a string of names, including US Telecom – that he used to defraud a host of victims through two separate schemes. Bell used different titles while at UST, including president, director and CEO.

In the first scheme, which ran from 2008 through 2010, Bell convinced a series of third-party payroll companies to fund UST’s payroll – and then failed to reimburse the companies for paying himself and his employees. In some cases, Bell sent checks to the payroll companies from accounts that did not have sufficient funds to cover the checks. (more…)

L.A. child molester to be released after spending 17 years in state hospital awaiting trial

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

Just before George Vasquez was scheduled to get out of prison, Los Angeles County prosecutors made a plea to the court: Don’t let him free — he’s too dangerous to live in public.

While in his early 20s, Vasquez had lured young boys from his South L.A. neighborhood to a spot near an alleyway with the promise of candy. He was convicted of molesting several children, ages 6 to 8, court records show.

Prosecutors argued that Vasquez needed to be confined within the walls of a state hospital, where he could receive mental health treatment for his disorder. So at their request, he was locked up while awaiting a trial to determine whether he met the state’s definition of a sexually violent predator. If so, he’d be hospitalized for a two-year term.

Seventeen years later, a judge on Tuesday ordered Vasquez’s release, ruling that repeated delays in bringing the case to trial had violated the 44-year-old’s constitutional rights. The decision could prompt similar release requests from dozens of other sex offenders from Los Angeles County who have been confined to a state hospital for years awaiting trial.

In his written ruling, Superior Court Judge James Bianco acknowledged the potential risk to public safety but said the delays in Vasquez’s case were “oppressive to the maximum degree.” Bianco noted that requests for postponements — often without reason — came from both prosecutors and defense attorneys. But, he said, that changed in 2014, when prosecutors began pressing for a trial. From then on, Bianco said, the delays were caused “almost entirely from defense counsel’s need to prepare the case for trial.” (more…)

Former Olympic gold medal boxer accused of lewd acts on child

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

Authorities are searching for more possible victims in connection with an Olympic gold medalist and boxing coach accused of committing lewd acts on a child.

Los Angeles County prosecutors this week charged Paul Gonzales, 53, with eight felony counts, including four counts of lewd acts on a child and one count of possessing child pornography, according to court records.

A Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman did not have additional details on the alleged crimes late Thursday. It’s unclear how many victims investigators have identified.

For the past decade, Gonzales has worked as the head boxing coach at the Eddie Heredia Boxing Club, an East L.A. club operated by the Los Angeles County Parks and Recreation Department. In 1984, he won a gold medal representing the U.S.

Investigators believe there may be more victims, because Gonzales has trained and mentored many children over the years. He’s being held in lieu of $545,000 bail and is due in court later this month, according to jail records. (more…)

January 9, 2018

MAN EXTRADITED FROM MEXICO AFTER FLEEING DURING TRIAL FOR SEXUALLY ABUSING 12-YEAR-OLD GIRL

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

SANTA ANA, Calif. – A man was extradited from Mexico after fleeing during his trial for sexually abusing a 12-year-old girl.

Defendant

Charges

Maximum Sentence

Court Date

Robert Lewis Carella, 38, Vista

Found guilty by a jury in absentia on June 22, 2015, of the following felony counts:

  • (2) Lewd act with a child under 14
  • Continuous sexual abuse of a child

20 years in state prison

Sentencing

To be determined

Circumstances of the Case

  • At the time of the crime, Carella was in a position of trust with access to the victim, 12-year-old Jane Doe.
  • Between 2008 and 2010, the defendant continually sexually abused the victim through unlawful sexual contact.
  • The abuse was reported to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) by a family member of the victim on March 10, 2013. (more…)

THIRD STRIKER CHARGED WITH ROBBING NINE RETAILERS AND ATTEMPTING TO ROB 10th IN SOUTH ORANGE COUNTY

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

SANTA ANA, Calif. – A third striker was charged yesterday with robbing nine retail clerks in South Orange County and attempting to rob a 10th in a period of five weeks.

Defendant Charges Maximum Sentence Court Date
Mathew Scott Rendon, 36, Mission Viejo Charged on Jan. 4, 2017, with the following felony counts:

  • (9) Second degree robbery
  • Attempted second degree robbery

Prior Strike Convictions

  • (3) Robbery in 2002 in Alameda
300 years to life in state prison Pre-trial hearing

Jan. 12, 2018, 8:30 a.m.

Department H-7, Harbor Justice Center, Newport Beach

Bail: $1 million

Circumstances of the Case

  • On Dec. 1, 2017, at approximately 6:50 p.m., Rendon is accused of brandishing a replica firearm while robbing cashiers at Powell’s Sweet Shop in Laguna Niguel and GameStop in Irvine an hour later while wearing a thick flannel shirt and an American flag bandana across his face. Irvine Police Department (IPD) responded and investigated this case. (more…)

Palmdale Man Pleads to Domestic Violence Death, Kidnapping

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

A Palmdale man entered a no contest plea today for the death of his girlfriend after she jumped out of a moving vehicle during a domestic violence attack, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Deputy District Attorney Jeffrey Illions said Bryan McKim, 58, entered the plea to one count each of voluntary manslaughter and kidnapping.

Sentencing is Scheduled on March 1 in Department A16 of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Antelope Valley Branch. McKim faces more than 12 years in state prison.

On March 3, 2016, the defendant was driving and arguing with his girlfriend, Linda Wood, 58, in his pickup truck near East Avenue R in Palmdale. The argument turned physical and the victim attempted to get out of the vehicle but McKim grabbed her by her hair and arms to prevent her from exiting, the prosecutor said.

When Wood finally broke free of the attack, she jumped out of the moving vehicle and hit her head on the street, the prosecutor added. She died at a local hospital on March 12, 2016. (more…)

January 8, 2018

California Man Indicted for Attempting to Provide Material Support to a Terrorist Organization

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

A federal grand jury returned a two-count indictment against Everitt Aaron Jameson, 26, of Modesto, California, charging him with attempting to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), a designated foreign terrorist organization, and distribution of information relating to destructive devices.

The announcement was made by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott for the Eastern District of California and Special Agent in Charge Sean Ragan of the FBI’s Sacramento Field Office.

“Federal law enforcement deserves our thanks for stopping a potential terrorist attack during the busy holiday season,” said Attorney General Sessions.  “The Department of Justice will continue to take every lawful step we can to disrupt plots and to protect our nation from foreign and domestic threats, including the dangerous threat posed by radical Islamic terrorism.”

“Our office is committed to investigating potential terrorist threats and working with our law enforcement partners to prevent those threats from being carried out,” said U.S. Attorney Scott.  “I am grateful to the FBI for their vigilance and commitment to keeping our communities safe.” (more…)

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