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March 16, 2016

MAN TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR AIDING IN THREE DEFENDANTS’ ESCAPE FROM OCJ BY PROVIDING MONEY AND ALCOHOL

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:02 am

SANTA ANA, Calif. – A man is scheduled to be arraigned today for aiding in three defendants’ escape from the Orange County Men’s Central Jail (OCJ) by providing them with money and alcohol. Tung Nguyen, 41, Westminster, is charged with one felony count of being an accessory after the fact. If convicted, Nguyen faces a maximum sentence of three years in state prison. Nguyen is scheduled to be arraigned today, March 14, 2016, in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana. The time is to be determined.

Between 5:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. on Jan. 22, 2016, Hossein Nayeri, Duong, and Jonathan Tieu are accused of escaping custody from OCJ through pipelines and by rappelling themselves down from the building’s roof.

In the early morning hours of Jan. 22, 2016, Nguyen is accused of aiding in the inmates escape by giving money and beer to Duong after the inmates arrived at Nguyen’s home in Westminster.

The Orange County Sheriff’s Department investigated this case and arrested the defendant on Friday, March 11, 2016.

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

Orange County District Attorney / Case # 16WF0517 / March 14, 2016

March 15, 2016

Los Angeles Man Sentenced to 150 Years in Prison for Sexually Abusing Minors in Russia

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

A Los Angeles man was sentenced today to 150 years in prison for sexually abusing three minor girls during trips to Russia over a two-year period, announced Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.

In November 2015, a jury convicted Yusef Yunosovich Abramov, 58, of five felony counts of engaging in illicit sexual conduct in foreign places.  U.S. District Judge Otis D. Wright II of the Central District of California also imposed a lifetime term of supervised release.

According to the evidence introduced at trial, in June 2009, Abramov, a dual Russian and U.S. citizen, flew from Los Angeles to Russia, and shortly after his arrival, he raped a 12-year-old girl and threatened to sever her head and play soccer with it if she told anyone about the abuse.  The trial evidence showed that in November 2009, Abramov again traveled to Russia and engaged in further sexual abuse of minor girls.

Trial evidence additionally demonstrated that in March 2010, believing that local schoolgirls had contacted the police, Abramov and two accomplices cornered three minor girls.  Abramov threatened all three girls while wielding a knife and each man then raped one of the girls.  The evidence showed that after threatening the girls’ lives, Abramov continued to rape at least two of the girls during that trip and subsequent trips to Russia.

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DEFENDANT FACES ADDITIONAL CHARGES FOR ATTEMPTING TO TAKE RESTITUTION MONEY FROM VICTIMS

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

SANTA ANA, Calif. – A defendant faces additional charges for attempting to take restitution money from victims in another open case. No Sung Pak, 75, Hollywood, is charged with two felony counts of attempted taking and receiving a portion of a worker’s wage on a public work, and a sentencing enhancement for crime-bail-crime. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of three years and 10 months in state prison for these charges. He was arraigned Friday, March 11, 2016, and is out of custody on $25,000 bail. He is scheduled for a pre-trial hearing May 26, 2016, at 8:30 a.m. in Department C-55, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

Pak and co-defendants Michael John Ferrin, 40, San Pedro, and Scott Sung Yang, 45, Los Angeles, are also each charged with five felony counts of taking and receiving a portion of a worker’s wage on public works and one felony count of recording a false forged instrument. Pak is additionally charged with 29 felony counts of willful failure to pay tax, two felony counts of misrepresenting facts to State Compensation Insurance Fund (SCIF), two felony counts of misrepresenting facts to workers’ compensation insurance company. If convicted, Pak faces a maximum sentence of 27 years and four months in state prison for these charges, and Ferrin and Yang each face a maximum sentence of five years and four months in state prison. Ferrin and Yang are out of custody on $50,000 bail. They are scheduled to be arraigned on May 26, 2016, at 8:30 a.m. in Department C-55, Central Justice Center.

Background of Case # 15CF1672
In 2005, Yang owned and operated Mackone Development. Yang is accused of working with Ferrin as his project superintendent to oversee his projects. Pak, who owns the business Pak’s Cabinets, is accused of working for Mackone Development as a subcontractor on several public works projects.

In 2012, Yang was awarded a public works project at Harvey Street Elementary School in Santa Ana as the prime contractor. Yang is accused of hiring Ferrin as his project superintendent to oversee the project and Pak as his subcontractor for the project. Pak is accused of using the employees from his business to help complete the public works project.

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THREE SANTA ANA POLICE OFFICERS CHARGED WITH PETTY THEFT AND VANDALISM DURING SERVICE OF SEARCH WARRANT ON MARIJUANA DISPENSARY

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

SANTA ANA, Calif. – Three Santa Ana Police Department (SAPD) officers were charged today with petty theft and one with vandalism during a legal search of a marijuana dispensary pursuant to a search warrant. Brandon Matthew Sontag, 31, and Nicole Lynn Quijas, 37, and Jorge Arroyo, 32, are charged with one misdemeanor count of petty theft. Sontag is also charged with one misdemeanor count of vandalism under $400. If convicted on all counts, Arroyo and Quijas face a maximum sentence of six months in jail and a $1000 fine and Sontag faces a one year and six months in jail and a $2000 fine. They are scheduled for arraignment April 11, 2016, at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-54, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

At approximately 5:50 p.m. on May 26, 2015, Arroyo, Quijas, and Sontag, along with other SAPD officers, were serving a search warrant signed by a magistrate on Sky High Holistic, a marijuana dispensary on 17th Street in Santa Ana. It was alleged that the dispensary was operating without proper permits to sell medical marijuana. The dispensary had two video surveillance systems, a visible 16-camera system and a hidden 4-camera system. SAPD personnel legally disabled 16 surveillance cameras, following investigatory and officer safety protocol. The hidden 4-camera system continued to record during the execution of the search warrant.

Sontag is accused of damaging fiveof the previously disabled surveillance cameras by banging and smashing the camera lenses into the corner of a display case and cash register, and banging the cameras into the corner of a shelf and safe. Each camera is valued between $80 and $100. At various times, Sontag, Quijas, and Arroyo are accused of entering the break room and taking snacks available to staff, including Detour Simple protein bars and Mrs. Thinsters cookies. The three defendants are accused of consuming the food items and sharing the protein bars with other SAPD personnel. Before leaving the premises at the conclusion of the search warrant, Quijas and Arroyo are accused of taking extra cookies with them.

The Orange County District Attorney’s Bureau of Investigation conducted a thorough investigation, including interviewing multiple witnesses and reviewing over 16 hours of unedited video surveillance footage with the cooperation of SAPD. While other SAPD personnel ate some protein bars, there is insufficient evidence that they knew the food items belonged to the dispensary and not their fellow officers. There was also no evidence that any SAPD personnel consumed any edible marijuana items available at the dispensary.

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March 14, 2016

Sylmar Woman Sentenced to Five Years In State Prison for Human Trafficking

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

A Sylmar woman was sentenced today to five years in state prison for forcing a young girl smuggled from El Salvador to work for her for two years, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office announced.

Dora Alicia Valle, 52, pleaded no contest last July to one felony count each of human trafficking and slavery in case BA423675 in an open plea before Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Edmund Clarke Jr. An open plea means there was no offer from prosecutors.

Deputy District Attorney Paul Kim with the Organized Crime Division said Valle paid to have the girl, who was 8 years old at the time, smuggled into the United States from El Salvador in 2012. Valle forced the girl to work six days a week at a Pacoima restaurant where Valle worked.

When the child wasn’t working at the restaurant, she was ordered to clean the Sylmar home shared by Valle and her boyfriend, Estrada Melvin Sandoval, 41.

Sandoval pleaded no contest last year to one misdemeanor count each of false imprisonment and battery and was sentenced to 1 ½ years in county jail.

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Man Charged with Human Trafficking, Lewd Acts in Long Beach

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

A 27-year-old man was charged today with trafficking a minor for sex and sexually abusing the teenage girl for nearly a month, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Patrick Lamont Harris (dob 10/22/88) has been charged with seven felony counts in case NA103753: four counts of lewd act upon a child and one count each of human trafficking of a minor for a commercial sex act, pimping a minor under 16 years of age and pandering by encouraging a minor under age 16.

The felony complaint also alleges that Harris was previously convicted of second-degree robbery in 2005 and 2009.

The defendant is scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon in Department S01 of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Long Beach Branch. Prosecutors will ask that bail be set at $1.73 million.

Prosecutors said Harris allegedly met a 15-year-old girl last month and committed lewd acts on the teen from Feb. 15 to March 9.

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Man Sentenced to Prison for Murder-for-Hire Plot

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

A 42-year-old man was sentenced today to 31 years to life in state prison for planning to kill his wife’s mother in her Long Beach home, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

On Dec. 1, 2015, a jury convicted Frank Haverly of three felony counts: conspiracy to commit murder, attempted murder and home invasion robbery in case NA097487.

Haverly’s wife and co-defendant, Holly Ramos, was found guilty by a jury on Dec. 3, 2015, of seven felony counts: two counts of forgery and one count each of conspiracy to commit murder, attempted murder, home invasion robbery, second-degree commercial burglary and grand theft of labor.

Ramos is scheduled to be sentenced on April 7 in Department S20 of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Long Beach Branch. She faces a possible maximum sentence of 33 years and eight months to life in state prison.

The third defendant, Keith Phillips, was convicted on Dec. 4, 2015, of home invasion robbery and sentenced to 10 years in state prison.

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March 11, 2016

Federal Court Permanently Enjoins Los Angeles County Pizza Parlor and its Owner from Accruing Payroll Tax Liabilities

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:22 am

LOS ANGELES – A federal judge has ordered that Evnol, Inc., which operates Palisades Pizza, and the company’s owner, Christopher H. Bandt, timely file payroll tax returns and pay payroll taxes.

In an order filed on Monday, United States District Judge Manuel L. Real entered a permanent injunction requiring Evnol and Bandt to timely file payroll tax returns and pay any payroll taxes that accrue.

According to the civil lawsuit filed by the United States, Evnol has repeatedly failed to timely file payroll tax returns or pay payroll taxes.

“Since the third quarter of 2007, Evnol has repeatedly failed to comply with its employment tax obligations despite repeated efforts by the IRS to bring it into compliance,” according to the government’s lawsuit. “Specifically, Evnol consistently failed to meet its obligations to make complete federal employment tax deposits and routinely failed to file timely employment and unemployment tax returns.”

The permanent injunction entered by the Court requires the defendants to stay current on their federal employment tax obligations.

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Santa Monica Man Faces Five Years in Federal Prison after Pleading Guilty to Conspiring to Engage in Synthetic Identity Fraud

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:18 am

LOS ANGELES – A Santa Monica man pleaded guilty this morning to a federal conspiracy charge stemming from a “synthetic identity” fraud ring that created bogus identities for the purpose of obtaining credit cards.

Yair Shoshani, 38, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud.

In a plea agreement filed in court, Shoshani, who also used the names “Ben Yahuda” and “Ben Cohen,” agreed to forfeit five properties and nearly $4.5 million in cash, including more than $3.2 million from a Swiss bank account.

Shoshani admitted that he conspired with others to conduct a “bust-out” scheme using synthetic identities and fictitious merchants to defraud banks that issue credit cards. Shoshani and the others created entirely fictitious synthetic identities, applied for credit with those bogus identities and manipulated the credit ratings for the synthetic identities by adding them as authorized users to credit card accounts belonging to real people who had high credit scores. With credit ratings established for the synthetic identities, Shoshani and the others set up fake business to process credit card transactions by the synthetic identities – transactions that were never paid for.

Victim banks in this “bust-out” scheme included JPMorgan Chase Bank, Bank of America, Citibank and Wells Fargo Bank.

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FLORIDA INMATE ARRAIGNED ON CHARGES OF ASSAULTING, KIDNAPPING, AND SEXUALLY ASSAULTING THREE WOMEN NEAR WESTMINSTER PARK

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:12 am

SANTA ANA, Calif. – A Florida inmate was arraigned today on charges of assaulting, kidnapping, and sexually assaulting three women near a park in Westminster. Arnold Eduardo Martinez, 34, Blackwater Correctional Facility, Florida, is charged with one felony count of attempted kidnapping to commit a sexual offense, three felony counts of assault with the intent to commit a sexual offense, two felony counts of kidnapping to commit a sexual offense, one felony count of battery with serious bodily injury, and one felony count of false personation, with sentencing enhancement allegations for great bodily injury and great bodily injury to a sexual assault victim. If convicted, Martinez faces a maximum sentence of 28 years and eight months to life in state prison. Martinez is scheduled for a pre-trial hearing, March 17, 2016, at 8:30 a.m. in Department C-5, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

In the early morning hours of July 18, 2008, Martinez is accused of driving a sedan near Sigler Park in Westminster and parking near Jane Doe 1, who was seated on a park bench. The defendant is accused of getting out of the vehicle and sitting near Jane Doe 1. Martinez is accused engaging in a brief conversation with Jane Doe 1. After Jane Doe 1 began to walk away from the bench, Martinez is accused of walking up behind Jane Doe 1 and putting his hand over the victim’s mouth before forcing her toward his vehicle with the intent to sexually assault her. Martinez is accused of fleeing the scene after Jane Doe 1 screamed and attempted to get away from the defendant.

At approximately 4:30 a.m. on July 24, 2008, Martinez is accused of parking his vehicle near Sigler Park where Jane Doe 2 was walking. Martinez is accused of approaching Jane Doe 2, grabbing the victim, and attempting to drag her toward his vehicle. The defendant is accused of dragging Jane Doe 2 into some bushes with the intent to sexually assault her. Martinez is accused of punching Jane Doe 2 multiple times when she attempted to escape. He is accused of then fleeing the scene in his vehicle. Jane Doe 2 suffered bruises, swelling, and abrasions.

At approximately 4:55 a.m. on Jan. 14, 2009, Martinez is accused of driving behind Jane Doe 3 as she was walking to church near Sigler Park. The defendant is accused of exiting the vehicle and forcing Jane Doe 3 into the passenger seat. Martinez is accused of chasing after Jane Doe 3 after she escaped from the vehicle and dragging her into nearby bushes nearby. The defendant is accused of punching Jane Doe 3 and hitting the victim’s head against the ground when she screamed and attempted to resist. Martinez is accused of fleeing the scene after attempting to sexually assault Jane Doe 3. Jane Doe 3 suffered bruises, swelling, and a cut to her head.

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