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April 3, 2014

Mexican Police Officer to be Arraigned Today on Federal Drug Trafficking Charges Involving about 20 Pounds of Narcotics

Filed under: Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:12 am

RIVERSIDE,       California – A Tijuana municipal police officer is expected to appear in United States District Court this afternoon to be arraigned on federal indictment that accuses him of illegally transporting more than 13 pounds of heroin and over six pounds of methamphetamine.

Noe Raygoza-Garcia, 33, a Mexican national, was indicted on March 27 on one count of possession with intent to distribute heroin and methamphetamine.

Raygoza was arrested on March 13 after federal officials saw him driving erratically on Interstate 15 near the Border Patrol checkpoint north of Temecula. After he was stopped by authorities and gave answers that aroused suspicion, a drug-detecting canine alerted to the vehicle, where Border Patrol agents found narcotics hidden in the rear seat, according to court documents.

If he is convicted of the one count in the indictment, Raygoza would face a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in federal prison and a maximum possible penalty of life.

Raygoza is currently being held without bond.

The case against Raygoza was investigated by the United States Border Patrol.

CONTACT:        Special Assistant United States Attorney Carlo A. DiCesare

(951) 276-6286

Central District of California DOJ / Release No. 14-039 / April 2, 2014

April 2, 2014

Riverside County Art Dealer Pleads Guilty in Federal Cyberstalking Case, Admitting He Extorted Victims with Threats of Attack

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:53 am

LOS ANGELES – The owner of a Temecula art gallery who stalked, harassed and attempted to extort as much as $300,000 from art world professionals pleaded guilty today to two federal stalking charges.

Jason White, 43, of Temecula, pleaded guilty today in the cyberstalking case before United States District Judge Stephen V. Wilson.

As a result of today’s guilty pleas, White faces a maximum statutory sentence of 10 years in federal prison when he is sentenced on June 9.

White was arrested by the FBI on February 12 after engaging in a six-month stalking and extortion scheme that targeted art world professionals with whom he had had business relationships. When those business relationships ended, White posted derogatory information about his former associates on websites he had created, and then used threatening emails to demand hundreds of thousands of dollars in exchange for taking the websites down. White repeatedly made extortionate demands through harassing text messages and emails, and when his demands were not met, he threatened violence against the victim families.

In one part of the scheme, White targeted his former employer, an art publisher, as well as his supervisor at the art publisher’s company. After creating derogatory websites in the art publisher’s name, White allegedly sent threatening text messages to the art publisher, the publisher’s son, and his former supervisor, according to court documents. In a text message to his former supervisor, he threatened to find her family and make her pay with “fear, anguish, and pain.” On several occasions, White obtained pictures of her child and sent pictures of the child to the victim with comments such as “it will be very unfortunate if something was to happen to him.”                                        (more…)

Los Angeles Physician Assistant Pleads Guilty in Two Medicare Fraud Cases

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:49 am

A Los Angeles physician assistant pleaded guilty today to defrauding Medicare by signing fraudulent prescriptions for durable medical equipment while working at two separate medical clinics in California.

Acting Assistant Attorney General David A. O’Neil of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney André Birotte Jr. of the Central District of California, Special Agent in Charge Glenn R. Ferry of the Los Angeles Region of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG), Assistant Director in Charge Bill L. Lewis of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office and Special Agent in Charge Erick Martinez of Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI) made the announcement.

Erasmus Kotey, 77, of Montebello, Calif., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Margaret M. Morrow in the Central District of California to one count of health care fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud.   Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 8, 2014.

According to court documents, Kotey was a physician assistant who worked at medical clinics in and around Los Angeles County.   From approximately November 2007 through February 2008, Kotey engaged in a scheme to commit health care fraud through his work at a clinic located at 866 North Vermont Avenue in Los Angeles.   In addition, from approximately April 2008 through December 2008, Kotey engaged in a conspiracy to commit health care fraud through his work at a clinic located at 943 South Atlantic Boulevard, Suite 218, in Monterey Park, Calif.

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DRUNKEN DRIVER TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR KILLING 5-YEAR-OLD FEMALE RELATIVE AND INJURING THREE OTHER CHILDREN AFTER CRASHING VEHICLE

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:46 am

SANTA ANA – A drunken driver is scheduled to be arraigned today for killing a 5-year-old female relative and injuring three other children after crashing his vehicle. Antolin Brito Soto, 32, San Juan Capistrano, is charged with one felony count each of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence while intoxicated, driving under the influence of alcohol causing bodily injury, driving with a blood alcohol content of .08 percent or more causing bodily injury, one misdemeanor count of driving on a suspended license, with sentencing enhancement allegations for personally inflicting great bodily injury, causing bodily injury and/or death to multiple victims, driving with a blood alcohol content of .15 percent or more, and great bodily injury to a child under five years old. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in state prison. He is being held on $100,000 bail and is scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon, April 1, 2014, in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana. The time is to be determined.

At approximately 6:50 p.m. on March 22, 2014, Soto is accused of driving under the influence of alcohol with four minor relatives in his Ford Explorer traveling westbound on Junipero Serra Road in San Juan Capistrano. The defendant is accused of driving at an unsafe speed through the parking lot of Silverado Senior Living Center, over a curb, and crashing into an embankment. The crash was reported to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) by nearby residents.

Soto is accused of causing the crash that killed 5-year-old Yuliana B. The three other children, 2-year-old Ayleen B., 8-year-old Arthur B., and 12-year-old Iriana S. were transported to local hospitals and treated for their injuries.

Soto is accused of displaying objective signs of intoxication and had a blood alcohol content of .18 percent one hour and a half after the crash.

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April 1, 2014

Los Angeles-Area Gang Member Who Trafficked Teens as Prostitutes Sentenced to 30 Years in Federal Prison

Filed under: Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:42 am

RIVERSIDE, California – A Lynwood gang member who pleaded guilty to federal sex trafficking charges – admitting that he used force, fraud and coercion to cause teen-age girls to work as prostitutes across Southern California – was sentenced this morning to 360 months in federal prison.

Paul Edward Bell, 30, a member of the Rolling 60s Crips street gang, was sentenced by United States District Judge Virginia A. Phillips.

Bell “not only used his fists, a cane, a shoe, and other objects against the females, he also pepper sprayed one of the victims in her face,” prosecutors wrote in a sentencing brief filed with the court. “He also threatened the victims with physical abuse, put a gun to the head of one of the victims, and locked at least two of the victims in his apartment. The physical and mental abuse and anguish suffered by the victims at the hands of defendant has and will continue to deeply affect the victims and their families.”

The sentencing brief notes that Bell was previously convicted in two prior state court cases with crimes related to sex trafficking.

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L.A.-Area Physician Assistant Pleads Guilty in Medicare Fraud Cases

Filed under: Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:39 am

LOS ANGELES – A physician assistant pleaded guilty today to defrauding Medicare by signing fraudulent prescriptions for durable medical equipment while working at two Los Angeles-area medical clinics.

Erasmus Kotey, 77, of Montebello, pleaded guilty before United States District Judge Margaret M. Morrow to one count of health care fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud.

Judge Morrow is scheduled to sentence Kotey on September 8, at which time he faces a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison.

According to court documents, Kotey was a physician assistant who worked at Los Angeles County medical clinics. From approximately November 2007 through February 2008, Kotey engaged in a scheme to commit health care fraud through his work at a clinic located at 866 North Vermont Avenue in Los Angeles.

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DISTRACTED FREEWAY DRIVER TO FACE TRIAL FOR KILLING MOTORIST BY CRASHING AT 80 MPH INTO CAR STOPPED IN TRAFFIC

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 5:36 am

SANTA ANA – An inattentive driver faces trial tomorrow for killing a motorist by crashing into the victim’s car at approximately 80 mph after failing to notice that traffic had come to a stop. Jorene Ypanto Nicolas, 31, San Diego, is charged with one felony count of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence and faces a maximum sentence of six years in state prison if convicted. Opening statements are scheduled to begin tomorrow, Tuesday, April 1, 2014, at 10:00 a.m. in Department C-28, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

At approximately 11:00 a.m. on April 27, 2011, Nicolas is accused of speeding northbound on Interstate 405 near Edwards Street in a Toyota Prius. She is accused of being distracted and inattentive while driving and failing to notice that the traffic ahead had come to a complete stop.

Nicolas is accused of failing to brake or slow and crashing at approximately 80 mph into the back of a Hyundai sedan, which was just starting to move after being at a full stop in traffic, driven by 23-year-old Deanna Mauer. The victim’s car was pushed into the car in front of her and then traveled and struck the center divider before coming to a stop facing southbound in the northbound lanes.

After crashing into the victim’s car, Nicolas is accused of losing control of her own vehicle and also crashing into the center divider. The defendant was transported to the hospital to be treated for minor lacerations.

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March 31, 2014

BOSTON MAN SENTENCED TO EIGHT YEARS IN PRISON FOR SEXUALLY ASSAULTING 12-YEAR-OLD GIRL IN 1995 AND “FACEBOOKING” HER IN 2011 TO MEET AGAIN

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.

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MAN SENTENCED TO FOUR YEARS IN STATE PRISON FOR KILLING PEDESTRIAN IN HIT-AND-RUN CRASH

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.

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DEFENDANT SENTENCED TO 15 YEARS TO LIFE IN PRISON FOR MURDERING MAN AFTER ARGUMENT

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.

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